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'°™' YUKON- 


Full Information of Outfit, Climate, Dawson City, 

with Notes on Alluvial and Metalliferous 



Report of Wm. Ogilvie, F.R.G.S. 


Diary of the late Archbishop Seghers, 

(Murdered on the Yukon.) 



?f-^ a.^-'"-'''*^- 


Preface 7 

The Alaska of the Tourist 9 

Fort Wrangd 10 

All-Canadian Route 11 

Glenora 12 

Teslin Lake 12 

Hootalinqua River 12 

Stickine River 12 

Taku Route 13 

Treadwell Mine 13 

Glacier Bay 14 

A Silent City 14 

Lynn Canal 15 

Chilcoot Pass Trail 16 

An Inscription 17 

Skagway 17 

White Pass 18 

Dimensions of Boats 19 

Bennet Lake 20 

Caribou Crossing 20 

Nares Lake 20 

Tagish Lake 20 

Taku Arm 21 

Weather in May 2i 

Thinklet Indians 21 

Marsh 21 

Lynx River ii 

Miles Canyon ; . . . 22 

White Horse Rapids 23 

■f ahk-heena River — 23 

Lake Le Barge 23 

Open Water 23 

Lewes River 24 

Big Salmon River 24 

T,ittle Salmon River 24 

Five Finger Rapids 24 

Rink Rapids 24 

Pelly River 24 

Fort Selkirk 25 

White River , 25 

Stewart River 25 

The Valley of the Yukon 25 

Klonjec Indian Village 26 

Dawson City 27 

Amusements 27 

Stores 28 

Wages 28 

Gold Output 28 

St. Michael's Route 29 

Fort Yukon 29 

Circle City 30 

Forty Mile 30 

Old Woman Rock 30 

Dalton Trail 31 

The Poor Man's Route 31 

Miscellaneous Information 32 

Rain and Snow Fall at Dawson . 32 

Work on the Trails 32 

Features of the Country 32 

Reports from Outlying Camps . . 33 

A Rich Country " 34 

Camp Life . . . ! 35 

Women on the Trail . . . ; 35 

Climate of the Upper Yukon 37 

Miners' Cabin 37 

Miners' Outfit 38 

PART 2. 

Notes on Prospecting 41 

Gold 41 

Alluvial Prospecting 42 

How to " Pan out " Gold 43 

The Average Value of Gold 43 

The Method of Reaching Pay- 

Dirt 43 

Washing the Pay-Dirt 44. 

Sluice Boxes 44 

Rockers 44 

Prospecting -for Mineral Bear- 
ing Ores 44 

How to Distinguish the Pre- 
cious Metals 45 

Composition of Rocks 46 

Nature of a Few Minerals 47 

Mine Surveying 48 

Calculation of Areas 48 

Cubic Measure 48 

Location of Claims 49 

Customs Stations 49 

Commissioner Ogilvie's Lecture . . 51 

Explorers and prospectors 51 

Discovery of Gold on Klondike 52 

A Stampede 53 

Area of Gold Fields 53 

Rich Quartz Located 54 

Diary of Archbishop Seghers 55 

Taiya River 56 

Out Into the Torrent 57 

Chilcoot Pass 58 

The Run of the River 59 

A Hermit 60 

Scenery of the Lakes 61 

Timber 61 

Berries 61 

Birds 61 

Bears and Other Animals 61 

Notes in French on the Conduct 

of a Maniac 62 

The Last Entry 63 

The Tragedy of Melozikakat ... 63 







Wrangel, steamship 750 

Wrangel to Glenora, river steamer 140 

Glenora to Telegraph Creek, boat 12 

Telegraph Creek to Teslin Lake, trail 153 

Teslin Lake to Dawson, boat 561 


Taiya (Dyea), steamship 1,000 

Skagway, steamship 995 


Head of Bennett Lake, trail 38 

Foot of Bennett Lake, boat 64 

Nares Laae (Caribou Crossing), boat 67 

Tagish Lake, boat 83 

Pow Wow River, boat 88 

Marsh J ake, boat 108 

Head of Miles Canyon, boat 134 

Foot of Miles Canyon, boat 134.62 

Head of White Horse Rapids, boat 136. 20 

Foot of White Horse Rapids, boat 136. 58 

Tahk-heena River, boat 151 

Head of Lake LeBarge, boat 163 

Foot of Lake LeBarge, boat 194 

Hootalinqua, boat 225 

Big Salmon, boat 258 

Little Salmon, boat ^. 293 

Five Finger Rapids, boat 352 

Rink Rapids, boat 358 

Pelly River, boat 411 

White River, boat 478 

Stewart River, boat 483 

Sixty Mile Creek, boat 504 

Dawson City, boat 549 

Forty Mile, boat 597 

Circle City, boat 847 

Victoria to St. Michael, boat , 2,200 

St. Michael to Dawson, boat I1650 




Full Information of Outfit, Climate, Dawson City, 

with Notes on Alluvial and Metalliferous 



Report of Wm. Ogilvie, F.R.G.S. 


Diary of the late Archbishop Seghers, 

(Murdered on the Yukon.) 





UNDER the idea that there are a large number of people 
living far from the Pacific Coast whose minds have been 
fired by accounts from the Klondike o-oldfields, and 
whose ojj|i«-tunities for obtaining reliable information on this 
subject are at best poor, I have prepared from my own experi- 
ence, and from the most authentic sources, some matter which 
I hope may prove useful to them. 

Under the heading of the "Tourist Route to Alaska," will 
be found a brief description of the trip from Victoria, to the 
point of disembarkation, which for the most part is one of 

Then follows a description in some detail of the overland 
journey to the lakes, and along the lakes and streams con- 
necting them, together with the relative distances between 
points, down to, and along the swift current of the Yukon to 

The list comprising the articles of an outfit is intended to 
give, in a general way, the requirements of a region, frozen 
the greater part of the year, and difficult and expensive to 

The notes on alluvial prospecting, and those on searching 
for metalliferous ores are necessarily brief, and can only be of 
use to the inexperienced prospector who, it is hoped, may 
find something in them to inform or to guide him in his search 
for the precious metals. 

The statement of the climatic conditions of the Yukon basin 
is taken from the meteorological reports furnished by the 
United States and Canadian authorities. 



I have given the substance of a lecture delivered by Mr. 
Wm. Ogilvie, Boundary Commissioner, believing it to be the 
most important recital of the history and resources of the 
Yukon country that has been made. 

That portion of the diary, appended, of the late Archbishop 
Seghers, whom I had the honour of knowing in the years gone 
by, will be read, no doubt, by many with a very great interest. 

I must not omit acknowledging my indebtedness to my con- 
stant young friend, Mr. S. H. F. Rowlinson. I have also to 
thank the local press, and the proprietor of the San Francisco 
Mining Journal. 

Victoria, B.C., December 31, 1897. ,^^ 

: ?! 




Land of the Midnight Sun. 




Never before have the wandering steps of the adventurous 
miner carried him into stranger or wilder lands than lie before 
him on his journey to the far-famed Klondike. Nevertheless, 
he goes oflF, undaunted, and the hardships and dangers which 
accompany his varied life, vanish before the fascinating dream 
of acquiring a share of the golden sands of the north. 

He constantly, during his ups and downs, is buoyed up 
with the pleasing hope of some day returning to home and 
friends, having, as the phrase goes, "made his pile." 


Starting from Victoria, the ship follows a wavering northern 
course, through the grandest scenery, affording a fine view of 
evergreen islands, the forests, and icy mountains of the Coast. 

Victoria is a handsome town,, a section of old England set 
down nearxy unchanged in the west. It is situated on the 
south east end of Vancouver Island, which is 289 miles long, 
the largest of the archipelago that stretches northward along 
the marg^ of the continent for nearly a thousand miles. 



\ Tourists usually stop here for a few days, and most of them 
go to the famous stores of the Hudson's Bay Company, to pur- 
chase furs or some wild Indian trinket. In the warehouses 
may be seen the clothing of bears, panthers, foxes and musk- 
rats, and many others of "our poor earth-born companions 
and fellow mortals. " 

lyeaving Victoria we move into a narrow sea, so narrow 
that we seem to be tracing a 


with lake-like expansions, the tide-currents, the drift wood 
brought down by avalanches, the inflowing torrents, and the 
luxuriant foliage of the shores making thelikeness complete. 
Then rounding some cape, the eye perchance is called away 
into a far receding vista, head lands on each side in charming 

Five hundred and fifty miles of this scenery and we reach 
the boundary line, "Forty-four forty," at the head of Queen 
Charlotte Islands. We are now in Alaska. This is the name 
of all that portion of the northwest extremity of this conti- 
nent, which, until '67 was known as Russian America. 

One hundred and fifty miles further on and the ship 
arrives at 


on Wrangel Island, near the mouth of the Stickine River. 
It is a quiet, dreamy old place, of a few hundreds of whites; 
and Indians living in their own strange way, midst the most 
delightful scenery imaginable. Bairon Wrangel established a 
trading post here about a century ago, and the fort, a massive 
stockade, was built by the United States. Indians mostly of 
the Stickine tribe occupy the two long draggled ends of the 
town along the shore, the whites numbering about 50, the 
middle portion. 


On the arrival of the steamer, most of the passengers go 
ashore to see the curious totem-poles in front of the massive 
timber houses of the Indians, and to buy cuiiosities, such as 
carved spoons, shaman rattles, miniature canoes, silver brace- 
lets hammered from dollars and tastefully engraved by Indian 
workmen; paddles, baskets, mats, etc. The traders in these 
curious wares are mostly women, who sit in fj-ont of the stores, 
the girls, brilliantly arrayed in ribbons and calico, the older 
ones sitting in their blankets, seemingly careless whether they 
sell anything or not. These Indians are proud and intelligent, 
and maintain an air of self-respect which tattered blankets and 
blackened faces cannot wholly subdue. 




What the mustang is to the Mexican vaquero the canoe is 
to the Indian of the Coast. In summer they may be seen in 
merry bauds skimming over the glassy and sheltered waters, 
the long beak-like prow, and stern of their canoes blithely 
decorated with purple epilobium, on their way to fish or 
gather berries, and perhaps no where else can be seen vSo 
many berries, the woods and the meadows, and open spaces 
along the shore are full of them, hundreds of tons might 
easily be gathered, and yet sufficient for every one in the 
territory remain. The Indians press them into cakes and dry 
them for winter use, to be eaten as bread with their salmon. 


Going into the woods almost anywhere, j'^ou have first to 
force a way through an outer tangle of Robus, huckleberry, 
dogwood, and elder bushes, and a strange woody plant several 
feet high, with limber, rope-like stems beset with thorns, and 
a head of broad leaves like the crown of a palm. This is the 
devil's club {Echino panax horrida) it is used by the Indians 
for beating witches. Back in the shady depths of the woods 
where the walking is free, you will be charmed with the 
beauty and grandeur of the trees, as well as the solemn still- 
ness of the forest. Wander where you may, wilderness ever 
fresh and ever beautiful, meets you in endless variety. 


The climate of that portion of the Coast that is washed by 
the Japan current, is remarkably mild and free from extremes 
of heat and cold. An Alaskan midsummer d^y is a day with- 
out night. At Sitka and Wrangel the sun sinks only a few 
degrees below the horizon, so that the rosy colors of the 
evening blend with those of the morning, leaving no gap of 
darkness between. In late autum^i and winter roaring storms 
come down and fill the days and nights with steady rains and 


The prospector who proposes taking this route will now 
have 10 disembark from the ocean steamer and transship his 
supplies to a river steamer, which will take him up the 
Stickine River, the mouth of which, at Rothsay Point, is 
12 miles from Wrangel. The river has a swift current and is 
usually open for navigation between the end of April and 
middle of May. Steamers of a light draft can ascend to 
Glenora, 140 miles from Rothsay Point, and canoes to Tele- 
graph Creek, 12 miles further on. 


At Glenora, the banks are low and slope gently to the water. 
Ice beins to run about the end of November, and a little later 
the river freezes over. In winter months miners haul their 
supplies, loaded on sleds, on the ice, and dogs and other 
hardy animals are pressed into service to aid in>this toilsome 

From Glenora to Lake Teslin, the commencement of the 
inland fresh waterway, the distance is said to be 153 miles, 
over a comparatively level country, dotted by marshes, 
swamps, ponds and lakes, 


met with on the journey is the Taltal River, which is 21 miles 
from Glenora. This riv^: is swift, and at this point runs 
between high gravel banks. 


we meet is also a river, the Nialino, and this, like the first, 
is swift but shallow, ahd somewhat wider than the Taltal. "* In 
this district the foothills are timbered with spruce, hemlock 
and pine. Further on stretches of marsh are met, which 
would, unless corduroyed, necessitate a considerable diver- 
gence to the side hills. Now comes Lake Teslin, about 100 
miles long, at which boats are built, and from which on the 
water journey presents no gjreat diflficulties. 

If improvements were made on this trail packing could be 
done from May to the middle or end of October, at which time 
• the lakes and rivers commence to freeze. Sawpiills and boat- 
building would then enliven the scene around Lake Teslin. 


or Tes-lin-loo, ,as the Indians call this river, leaves Lake 
Teslin and follows a northwesterly direction to its confluence 
with the Lewes River, 28 miles below Lake Le Barge. In its 
course of about 120 miles, it receives numerous tributaries, and 
wherever prospecting has .been done gold has been found. 
From Seymour Creek, entering about midway of its course, 
good reports have come, but owing to the difl&culty in the 
past of getting in sufficient supplies, miners were obliged to 
abandon their prospects. 

When the spring is well advanced, the country at intervals 
provides good grazing for pack animals, but cannot be de- 
pended on to supply grass at the close of the summer season. 
We now return to the 


The scenic glories of the river country cannot fail to excite 
wonder and admiration, and the thousands of tourists who 


will come to the Coast to see Alaska, and the extraordinarj'' 
sights accompanying the rush to the gold fields will be well 
remid for their trouble. 

The Stickine River follows a westerly course through 
glassy plains, then curving southward and receiving numerous 
tributaries from the north, it enters the coast range and 
sweeps across it to the sea, through a valley that is from i to 3 
miles broad, and marvelously beautiful from end to end. 
The canon of the river is a gallery of sublime pictures, an 
unbroken series of high mountains, glaciers, waterfalls, cas- 
cades, groves and grassy meadows, and above them all many 
peaks and spires tower grandly into the sky. 

lycaving Wrangel and continuing the journey northward, 
the ship passes through the picturesque Wrangel Narrows into 
Souchoi Channel and Frederick Sound. Near Cape Fanshaw 
you are opposite a group of glaciers, the largest of which is the 
Patterson glacier. At Sum Dum or Halkam Inlet, another 
fleet of icebergs come in sight. The scenery in this inlet is of 
the wildest description. About 40 miles up the Coast more ice- 
bergs appear; this is the entrance to Taku Inlet. It is 18 
miles long, and in this distance you may count 45 glaciers, a 
sight worth coming round the world to see. The beautiful 
Taku glacier might well be mentioned here, but by and bye 
we will see the grandest of them all. 


This route starts at the head of Taku Inlet, and involves 
considerable hardships. Small boats take travellers to the 
head of the inlet. Then the inland journey commences. The 
trail crosses a high mountain, and then following the canon of 
the Taku River for some distance, turns a little to the east 
and follows the side hills of an opening in the Coast range of 
mountains to the Inklin river, a distance of about 80 miles. 
Here rafts or boats are built, and the long water journey com- 
mences. This route avoids the Grand Canyon and the White 
Horse Rapids, but the avoidance of these wild waters is 
scarcely sufl5cient compensation when weighed with the up- 
hill and down-hill toil of a long and rough trail. 

A little down the inlet is Juneau, hemmed in in front by the 
water, and a towering mountain rising like a wall at the back. 
Just across on Douglas Island is the great 


Dense col" ins of smoke are seen issuing from the chlori- 
nation workt> which are here, burning that part of the ore 
which the batteries have not been able to separate from the 


gold. Its poisonous vapors that the .humid atmosphere has 
crowded down the mountain sides have bleached the timber 
almost white. 

Passing between Douglas and Admiralty Islands the 
steamer turns to the south into Icy Strait, and moves across to 


The largest of the seven glaciers that discharge into Glacier 
Bay is the Muir. The front is about three miles wide, but the 
central berg-discharging portion, which extends across the 
inlet; like a huge blue barrier, is only about half as wide. 
The height of the ice- wall above the water is about 300 feet, 
and 720 feet of the wall is below the surface, While still a third 
unmeasured portion is buried beneath the material that is 
being constantly deposited at the foot of it. Therefore, were 
the water and rocky detritus removed, there would be pre- 
sented a sheer precipice of ice a mile and a half wide and more 
than 1,000 feet in height. The bergs given oflF fall with tre- 
mendous noise like distant thunder. The average rate is 
about one in six minutes. The largest and most beautiful of 
the bergs, instead of falling from the exposed wall, rise from 
the submerged portion with grand commotion, heaving aloft 
tons of water, while they plunge and heave before they sail 
away as crystal islands, free at last, and happy, one might 
think, after being held in an icy grasp for centuries. This 
grand glacier, draining an area of perhaps i ,000 square miles, 
and reaching back fifty miles into mysterious solitudes, is two 
hundred times as large as the Mer de Glace of the Alps. The 
rate of the motion in the central cascading portion is from 
seven to ten feet a day. Think of Niagara Falls frozen stifiF 
and you have a slight idea of the terjninus of Muir Glacier ; 
picture a background of snow-capped mountains 15,000 feet 
high, and then imagine, if you can, the effect of the sunshine 
pouring in iris colors on the crystal ice. 


An unknown city is said to have been seen by Professor 
Davis, in mirage over Muir glacier. The buildings seemed to 
him of massive dimensions, extending in solid and unbroken 
blocks as far as the eye could reach. The entire limits of .the- 
city were confined within a halo of light, dense yet transparent, 
pouring its soft glow upon roof and wall in glorious transform- 
ation. To the right and left a range of mountains, cov- 
ered with the garb of winter, formed the background. The 



top of a high monument in the center of a broad street seemed 
to pierce its ghostly robes. At one end of the street a large 
building with a dome, while near the other end a piazza hav- 
ing beneath it an excavation running out to the sea appeared. 
At the other end of the excavation the walls of a building 
stood apparently uninjured, while the roof had disappeared 
and smoke seemed to issue from the interior. From beyond 
the burning building a driveway, in the form of a crescent, 
seemed to encircle a portion of the city. Yet within the whole 
of its length and breadth not one soul could be seen. All was 
silent as a grave. When suddenly the vision began to move 
awa3^ Its glories and grandeur lured with a fascination which 
he could not resist. But as he walked forward it seemotd to 
recede with every pace, and before he could get within the 
silent portals it was wafted into space and lost to view. 

The city is said to resemble Bristol, England, but beyond 
that it remains unidentified. 

The summers in Alaska are delightful — never oppressively 
warm ; the long nightless days never lose their spell, and in 
retrospect the wonders of the Northland appear the greater. 

Leaving Glacier Bay the steamer proceeds northward into 
Lynn Canal, the most beautiful of all the mountain-walled 
channels you have yet seen. The Auk and Eagle glaciers* 
appear in one view on the right as you enter ; but it is on the 
west side, near the head of the canal, that the most striking 
feature of the landscape is seen — the wonderfully picturesque 
Davidson glacier. Shortly after passing this glacier the 
northernmost point of the trip is reached at Taiya, the head of 
CLxx. jot Inlet — the east Arm of Lynn Canal — a little above 
59®, and distant from Victoria i,ooo miles. 

This is the Alaska of the tourist, famous for its glaciers, its 
beautiful inlets, and its picturesque Indians and their totem 
poles. But beyond the big white range is another and a 
totally diflferent country, the valley of the Yukon. Just across 
the coast range from Taiya is a chain of lakes surrounded by 
snowy mountains and coneected by a narrow stream, which, 
after receiving numerous tributaries, swells into a great river 
and pours its huge flood into Behring Sea. On the lower half 
of its course the river receives the waters of the Porcupine, 
Tanana, Kokukuk and numerous small streams, until the 
mountain brook has, in the 2,400 miles of its course, become 
one of the greatest rivers on the earth. Leaving the tourist at 
the head of Lynn Canal the prospector's holiday ends, and he 
prepares for the more serious task of crossing the mountains. 


At the head of the canal there are two trails over the moun- 
tains, which unite at the lakes beyond. 


Landing at Taiya, or Dyea, as the miners call it, the plan 
is to follow the usual route of miners bound for Dawson City 
— to cross the Chilcoot Pass and descend to the lakes on the 
other side, dragging the outfit on hand-sleds across these lakes 
to a point where there are trees to build a boat in which to 
continue the journey. Near the landing place there is a 
village of Thlinket Indians, who assist travellers in packing 
their supplies at so much per pound. In August the price 
was eight cents to the summit and twenty-five cents to the 

The route lies up the valley of the Dyea River, and at certain 
stages of the water, boats can ascend to within a mile of the 
cafion, a distance of five miles, and canoes can go one mile 
further. Here packing commences, and a little further on the 
sled is loaded, and the mountain climb commences up a steep 
inclineto Sheep Camp, a distance of eleven or twelve miles 
from the shore. The elevation of this point is about 800 feet. 
Looking up a large gorge, flanked by precipitous snow-covered 
mountains, you can see at the summit a little notch known as 
the Chilcoot Pass, the gate to the Yukon treasures. The seri- 
ousness of the task is not apparent. In April the snow had 
disappeared at sea level, but a short distance up the cafion the 
ground was covered with it. A few hours' hard climbing 
brings us to the scales, where supplies are weighed, near the 
last and hardest part of the ascent. This point is about five 
miles from Sheep Camp. A toilsome and terrible journey of 
about a mile up an incline rising at an angle of about forty- 
five degrees, and we reach the summit. From this lofty and 
narrow crest of snow and ice we see below the tortuous zigzag 
trail and ahead the valley of the Yukon stretching away in 
billows of spotless white. 

The elevation of the pass is 3,378 feet. The upper limit of 
timber is reached near the foot of the dreaded pass on the 
south side, at an elevation of 2,300 feet, and on th^ north side 
1,000 feet below the summit. 

Preparations are now made for the descent — the sled is 
loaded, and everything made secure for the wild ride down the 
icy slope. The route is through a gorge and the sled shoots 
along like an arrow with the motion of a boat in a choppy 
sea. All goes well while it remains on an even keel, but if it 

i moun- 

he plan 
on City 

on the 
se lakes 
hich to 
re is a 
le price 

to the 

e of the 
•ne mile 
: on the 

a steep 
e miles 
CO feet, 
lown as 
'he seri- 
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limbing . 
lear the 
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rney of 
t forty- 
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way in 

imit of 
on the 
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Jled is 
Nti the 
It if it 


should strike a rock or other obstacle in its flight the conse- 
quences, in all likelihood, would be serious. « 

Leaving the gorge the sled runs on to a sort of bench or 
flat, and four miles down the ravine brings us to a clump of 
dwarfed spruce trees, the upper limit of timber. A few miles 
further on and we reach Lake Linderman. The work of 
getting supplies over the mountain when the snow is soft 
entails labor of the most slavish kind. If the lake is clear of 
ice the usual course is to build a raft and float down to the 
end, and then pack the supplies over the ridge to the head of 
Lake Bennet. 

Lake Linderman is five miles long and half a mile wide, 
and the first of the chain of six lakes of the Upper Yukon. 
It is shut in by glacier-worn granite hills, and here and there 
along its shores are a few small pine and spruce trees. All of 
these lakes remain frozen until May. The trail comes out at 
the east side of the lake. The timber is not sufficiently long 
for boats, and instead of taking to the stream, a crooked and 
rocky one, and dangerous for boats, which connects Linder- 
man with Lake Bennet, the trail follows a sandy ridge three- 
quarters of a mile long to the head of Lake Bennet, where the 
trails unite. 

Here the following 


was nailed to a tree over eleven years ago : 

"Archbishop of Victoria, V.I. , accompanied by Fathers 
Tosi and Robant, camped here and offered the holy sacrifice, 
July 30, 1886." 

The above was written by the late Archbishop Seghers 
scarcely four months before the tragedy (see diary) of Melozi- 
kakat, on the lonely banks of the Yukon. 

We will now return to the coast, and as a very large propor- 
tion of tl\p travel was over the White Pass, it will here be des- 
cribed in detail. 


The town is situated about two miles south of the head of 
Chilcoot Inlet, and about four miles from Dyea, from which 
it is separated by a rocky point. When the reports came out 
in June of the great discoveries of gold, Skagway was a deso- 
late looking place, without accommodation of any kind for 
the thousands that were soon to land on its long sandy 
beach. Now, twenty -six hotels and saloons are open day and 
night, and all the concomitants of a fast town are present. 
The population has grown to about 3,000, and frame build- 


ings occupy the place where tents were a few months ago. 
The co«t of living has dropped from the boom prices of early 
spring to a rate very little in excess of those in the larger 
towns to the south. The difficulties, too, of landing freight 
have largely disappeared. Three fine wharves running out to 
deep water have feeen built, and no longer will be seen the 
pull-dog pull-devil struggle of horses, dogs and men on the 


Starting from the bay, about half a mile in width, at the 
mouth of the Skagway River, the trail follows the southerly 
bank for about a mile, then crosses over the bridge and con- 
tinues on for about three miles to the foot of the hill, at which 
place there was a little colony of campers who christened the 
place Eden. There was one lady, a Mrs. Etelstone, from 
Kentucky, in the camp in August. Up to this point the trail 
is over level bottom land and admits of the use of wagons ; 
but here the mountains close in, and the trail rises up the side 
for about three miles till it reaches an elevation of about i ,000 
feet, when it descends to a large tributary of the Skagway 
called Porcupine Creek, which it crosses over a bridge, 
and after winding along a hillside known as the Porcupine 
Hill, descends to the bank of the river, which it follows for 
about 400 yards to the next bridge, a distance of about four 
miles from Porcupine Creek. Just below this crossing the 
river is contracted to d width of about eight feet. The trail 
now follows the south bank of the river for about two miles, 
when it again crosses, and, rising over a spur of the moun- 
tains, about 150 feet above the river, descends to the fourth 
crossing," a distance of about half a mile from the third cross- 
ing. From this point there are two trails, one known as the 
"cut-oflF" and the other as the "turtle-back." The cut-off 
follows along the river and is used by packers, while the main 
trail follows down stream for a little way and then crosses the 
Turtle-back Mountain at an elevation of about 1,300 feet above 
the level of the river. This part of the trail over the ' * turtle- 
back," which is about two miles, is conceded to be worse for 
horses than any other. At the river the trails re-join, and 
following the bank for about half a mile cross the river for the 
fifth and last time at the ford which brings us to the foot of 
the summit. Up to this point there is a good deal of timber, 
but from the ford to the summit, a distance of two miles, and 
from the summit to the first meadow, three miles further on, 
there is no timber. . 



. 19 


is perhaps a mile wide, and its height is hardly more than 
1,000 feet above the ford. The view is grand on a clear day. 
lyooking backward the dark valley of the Skagway can be 
traced winding its way through the white domes looming in 
the azure of the sky, while in front, on either side, stretches 
an elastic carpet of golden mosses dotted by miniature lakes 
and ponds, and flanked by an unbroken series of peaks in 
spotless white, down ,which avalanches from the snow-laden 
heights boom and reverberate. Here storm-winds gather in 
the early spring, choking the air with snow and sweep over 
the lakes beyond. From the summit to the first meadow the 
descent is very gradual. The First Meadow, as it is called, is a 
long strip of peat marsh, rather than meadow land. Here a 
number of horses, too weak from want of food — the miners, 
trusting to the meadows, packed no hay over the summit — 
were abandoned during the summer. It is four miles from the 
first meadow to the second which is similar to the first, but 
less in area, and about eight miles to the Rocky Ford which 
crosses Shallow Lake, a strip of water several miles in length. 
The trail now skirts the lake for over a half a mile and con- 
tinues through a better timbered country over ridges and 
marshy places. After passing through about six miles of this 
kind of country the trail comes out at the lower end of Lake 
Linderman, and turning to the right follows along the ridge 
above the rapids to the head of Lake Bennett, the junction of 
the Dyea and White Pass trails. 

The heavy demands made upon the trail by the thousands 
of men and horses churned every marshy spot into a mud hole. 

Arriving at the head of Bennett Lake before June there are 
two courses open to the traveller, either to proceed over the 
ice with his sleigh or to go into camp and build a boat. If he 
should decide to push on at once he may, if fortune favours 
him with a good breeze, make good time by putting on the 
front of the sled a V-shaped mast and rigging up a sail with a 
tent-fly or blanket. If, on the other hand, he determines to 
wait for open water, he can buy boards at the mill, 200 yards 
away, or fell trees, construct a " saw-pit," a scaffolding about 
eight feet high, and whip-saw the timber into suitable lengths 
for his boat. The whipsaw is an instrument about eight feet 
long with a handle at either end. 

When you make or buy a boat have it at least twenty-two 
feet long on the bottom, with a prow projecting two feel. . 
Have the widest part of the boat about one-third of the dis- 



tance aft from the bow. From there have it taper somewhat 
to the stern. Have the stern with quite a rake, otherwise it 
will be swamped in the rapids, and the bottom should be tour 
or five inches higher at th=! stern than amidships. 

The cost of boats varies very considerably at the lakes. In 
last August the price for a good boat was two hundred 
dollars. Timber for boat building is sawed into straight 
boards a suitable length, and ten inches wide and three- 
fourths of an inch thick. 

Lake Bennett is 25.8 miles long, and the upper end is about 
half a mile wide, and lies between beetling granite ranges 
which rise from the water to heights of 3,000 and 4,000 feet. 
About midway of its length another arm, called Wheaton 
River, comes in from the west. This arm is wider than the 
other and terminates in rugged and bare mountains. The 
region is in every sense an Alpine one. The lower part of the 
lake is over a mile wide, with deep muddy water. Here a 
broad valley opens to the north, and the beach is low and flat. 
To the east are high hills, around which the water turns in 
in a channel called Caribou crossing, about 300 feet wide, 
and which soon expands into another lake. 

Caribou Crossing, so called because great bands of caribou 
cross here. These splendid animals roam over the great un- 
explored region extending to the head waters of the Dease 
and lyiard Rivers, and hundreds of miles beyond to the 
Mackenzie River, which flows from the Great Slave Lake in 
the Northwest, and pursuing a northerly course empties into 
the Arctic Ocean. A short stretch of river joins Bennett with 

Lake Nares is the shortest of the system; it is 2.7 miles 
long, and its greatest width is about a mile. On the east 
side the mountains rise abruptly from the shore. It is joined 
with Bove Lake by a channel of about 600 yards long. Low 
alluvial land covered with willows extends along the channel 
to the west end of Bove Lake. 

Bove or Tagish Lake is about a mile wide for the first two 
miles of its length, when it is joined by the Bras des Vents 
(Windy Arm). Here the lake expands, but soon narrows 
again to about half a mile. Ten miles from its head the Taku 
Arm enters from the south. The region of the lakes is most 
picturesque, abounding in striking points of view, and in land- 
scapes pleasing in variety, and grand and impressive in their 
rugged forms. The elevation of this remarkable system of 
lakes above the sea, by aneroid barometer, is 2,088 to 2,150 


Taku Arm, twenty miles long, is narrowed at the entrance 
to a width of about a mile, and is bordered on the west side by 
a uniform wall-like range of limestone mountains sloping to 
the water. The lower end of Tagish Lake occupies a valley 
which runs through to Bennet Lake. The west side is very 
flat and shallow, and is usually followed as it affords some 
shelter from the strong winds which come up from the south. 

The Pow-Wow, a short tranquil reach of river, five miles in 
length and about 170 yards wide, connects Tagish with Marsh 
Lake. This stream was open in mid-chann6l in the early 
part of May. The weather had been quite warm for several 
days, and the snow had benun to melt in the valley of the 
river. About four miles down on the west bank there is a nice 
camping ground, and directly opposite are Indian log houses, 
the yearly rendezvous of bands of natives. 

The Thinklet Indians from Chilcat, Taiya, and the Tenne- 
hes, from as far away as the mouth of the Pelly River, meet on 
this neutral ground to trade, and indulge in their great annual 
drunk with the accompanying feasts and dances. In this 
vicinity there is good timber for boat building. On May 13 
the air was alive with geese on their northward migration, 
and a day or two later came the wavies {anser hyp^rboreus) ; 
small game, such as ducks, rabbits and grouse are plentiful. 

Marsh Lake is nearly twenty miles long and about two 
miles wide. It lies in a continuation of the same wide valley 
occupied by the lower end of Tagish Lake. On the jt side 
the banks are high and gravelly and lotty mountains in the 
distance bound the view. On the left are low grassy mead- 
ows beyond which broken hills are seen. At the lower end 
McClintock river enters from the east, bringiin down great 
quantities of drift wood, which is banked high near its mouth. 
Between Lake Marsh and Lake LeBarge, which is the last 
and longest of the chain of lakes, there are fifty-five miles of 
river, but in this distance are the two greatest obstacles to 
navigation in the whole Yukon system — Mile^ Cafion and 
White Horse Rapids. Spring had advanced with such aston- 
ishing rapidity that the snow had almost disappeared on May 
14, and the weather was superb. 

Lewis River, where it leaves Marsh Lake has received the 
name of Lynx River. It is about two hundred yards wide 
and averages this distance as far as the canon. Twenty-five 
miles from Lake Marsh we come to a bend, and now see 
ahead a brown rocky ridge divided by a slit less than 50 feet 
wide, and at the same time hear the roar of the rapids in their 
wild rush through the canon . 

To make the run successfully is easily practicable, but it is 



imperative to keep in the centre of the channel and not to 
allow the boat to be caught in the eddies. 

There are two ways of passing the rapids, one by portaging 
over the hill on the east bank, and the other by boldly 
running through. To utilize the portage the boats are un- 
loaded and dragged out of the water, and by means of a wind- 
lass drawn up the hill slope, about. loo feet high, and then 
pulled on rollers for three-quarters of a mile to the river. 

The Archbishop, whose diary is appended, describes the 
rapids as follows : 

"Miles Caflon, about five-eighths of a mile in length, lies 
between two steep, almost perpendicular cliflFs of basalt about 
loo feet in height, in the shape of columns, through which 
the whole river, compressed into a space of 50 feet, rushes 
with tremendous velocity. The water boils up in large waves, 
having a depression in the centre so that no floating object 
can possibly strike against the rocks of the bank. For about 
a quarter of a mile the banks are nearly parallel; then they 
widen out, the current being more slack between two eddies, 
the water after leaving this wide circular basin rushes over a 
large rock into another channel and leaves the Caflon roaring 
and foaming, as if to testify to its fury. One boat was un- 
loaded and the supplies packed across the trail along the 
Caflon. Fuller, an attendant, took the helm, Father Robaut 
took an oar, the miner we had picked up took another, and as 
I did not want to see my people jeopardise their lives without 
sharing their danger, I took my place in front of the boat, my 
watch in hand, to- measure the velocity of our locomotion. 
My presence seemed to remove from my followers all dread of 
the gloomy Caflon. We started off at i p.m., and in a 
moment the swift, current caught our boat and whirled it 
between the breakers on each side of the Caflon. It was a 
terrible scene. We were visibly on an incline and rushing 
down hill with the speed of a locomotive. The roaring of the 
water, the spray that filled the air all around us, the waves 
that struck our scow, which rolled and pitched as if on the 
billows of the sea, made an impression on our minds that will 
not easily be forgotten. But we had no time for reflection. 
In a few moments we found ourselves in a slack current and 
between two eddies, which we had to avoid most carefully. 
Then another plunge into the rest of the Caflon. Passing 
o\rer a rock over which the water poured and foamed a liquid 
hill behind us that screened from our view the head of the 
Caflon; we were hauled right and left, tossed and shaken, 
shipping the water at intervals and merging from the dark 
place, having made a mile in three minutes and twenty-five 



seconds. A quick motion of the rudder gave a sharp turn to 
our scow and brought her^ into slack water, whilst we landed 
where three of the miners waved their hats to congratulate us 
on the success of our achievement. 

On Wednesday moyning, August 25, we left the foot of 
Miles Caflon, and reached safely the head of White Horse 
Rapids, a distance of about two miles. Here we had to un- 
load our boat again and pack the supplies once more a distance 
of about a mile. Next day we let our boat down the Cafion, 
holding her stem from the shore with a line and pushing her 
oflF the rocks with poles. This Cafion has not the same dread- 
ful appearance as Miles Cafion, but the water is shallow and 
very boisterous, it rushes over boulders and dashing against 
them, it recoils and boils backwards, covering itself with a 
white crest which some extravagant imagination has com- 
pared to the mane of a white horse. At one moment our boat 
was in imminent danger of perishing. She J&Ued with water, 
sank, an . carried away by the current, snatched away the 
lines from the hands that were holding them, when, in the 
nick of time. Fuller caught the lines with a pole, all joining 
in a supreme eflfort got control of the boat and brought her 
to an eddy. She was promptly bailed out and landed safely 
at the foot of White Horse Rapids. " 


Fifteen miles from White Horse Rapids, we come to the 
Takh-heena River, which has its source in the Chilkat moun- 
tains to the west, and is joined by the Nat-sun-tur River near 
the falls, about 40 miles from its mouth, which is 12 miles 


This lake was frozen May 18, although the river was open. 
It is 31 miles long and from three to six miles wide. The 
upper end is enclosed by sandstone hills through which there 
are several channels. When the lake is clear of ice, boats 
should be headed for an island in the centre, and then cross to 
the right hand and follow close to the bank as a safeguard in 
case a storm should be encountered. The lake, which has an 
elevation of 2,088 feet, lies between broken hills, around 
which it takes a sharp turn to to the east, with a current of 
perhaps six miles an hour. Near the end of May the weather 
was warm and 


was reached on lea\ring I^ake lyC Barge on the 20th May. 
From here to its mouth the Yukon is unobstructed, save by a 

I *i 





couple of unimportant rapids, and the remainder of the jour- 
ney with fine weather, may be a delightful excursion. 


The Lewes River, on leaving the lal^e, is 600 feet in width, 
This part of the stream from Lake Le Barge to the Pelly River, 
is called by the miners, Lewes River; it is, as a matter of fact, 
part of the Yukon. The surface of the country is rolling and 
hilly, backed by low mountains, and generally wooded in the 
valleys, the uplands being bare. Caribou and moose are 
occasionally seen. 31 miles from Lake Le Barge we come 
once more to the Hootalinqua, and 33 below, the 


enters, coming from Lake Quiet, 150 miles or more to the south 
east, and beyond which is an unexplored country. This river 
received its name from the quantity of salmon in its waters. 
It is wonderful how this beautiful fish forces its way over bars 
and rapids for nearly 1,800 miles from Behring Sea. 35 miles 
further on at the mouth of the Little Salmon the Tinueh 
Indians have a camp. They are a fine looking lot of people, 
drcBsed in skins and furs. Long before we reach the 


which are 59 miles from Little Salmon, we can see the five 
columns of rock in the channel of the river. By keeping- to 
the right no difficulty will be found in running through. Six 
miles lower down are the 


, These rapids are formed by a bar of rocks extending some 
distance out from the west side of the river. On the east side 
the passage is quite clear. Light draught steamers with 
powerful machinery, could ascend to the head of Teslin Lake, 
300 miles from Five Fingers. The river is here much swifter 
than above, and we need row only enough to break the 
monotony of lounging about in the boat as we drift along past 
the hills, which close in at the west side 25 miles from 


which is about 300 miles long. It flows from Lake Francis, 
in the south east, aud follows a north-westerly course to its 
junction with the McMillan, a large river, coming from a 
great unexplored country extending to the rocky mountains, 
and then bends, following a westerly course to its junction 
with the Lewes River, 53 miles from the Rink Rapids. 









Nothing now remains of this old fort but a blackened chim- 
ney. It is a little distance below the junction of the lyCwes 
and Pelly, and here Harper, whose history is so closely con- 
nected with the country, has a trading post. 

I^eaving Fort Selkirk, islands are numerous, and the valley 
preserves its usual depth of about 800 feet. Cliflfs of basaltic 
rocks are passed, and gravel terraces occur occasionally, de- 
creasing in height as we descend. The river now follows a 
W. N. W. bearing, but lower down bends to the E. and 
follows a north-easterly direction. Wooded banks and steep 
slopes with rocky bluffs above, are the chief features of this 
part of the country. We now reach the 


which is 95 miles from the Pell> , a great stream fed by tribu- 
taries coming from as far away as Mt. St. Elias in the west. 
A view up it showed a wide valley filled with countless bars 
and islands, between which the swift stream threads its tortuous 
course and enters the Yukon with a force sufficient to drive its 
white muddy water half way across and to change the colour 
of the Yukon from a pale green to white, for a distance of over 
100 miles. Ten miles below the 


enters the Yukon from the east. A number of prospectors 
were at work on its branches near the mouth during the sum- 
mer. A hundred miles up, it receives the McQuestion, where 
. it is 400 feet wide and it is deep enough and sufficiently free 
from bars and rocks to be navigated by flat-bottomed steamers 
that distance. Moose are plentiful and fish abundant. Along 
the valley of the rivei are great quantities of berries, such as 
black and red currants, gooseberries, raspberries, cranberries, 
and huckleberries. Recent accounts of an official character 
from this district declare it to be exceedingly rich. 

An important feature of the river is the constant recurrence 
along it of high gravel terraces, most of which are more or 
less auriferous. It is possible that the gold found on the bars 
in the river is concentrated from these. 

Twenty-one miles further on we pass Sixty-Mile Creek. 


Leaving the Stewart the river maintains a general northerly 
course, and in the expanded stretches islands occupy much of 
the surface. Beaches line the shore and tracking is possible 

I fi 


for the remainder of the journey. The current is swift and 
uniform, and at a medium state of the waters runs about 5 
miles an hour. The width of the river occasionally exceeds a 
mile, but it narrows as we approach our destination. The 
valley of the Yukon from the Pelly is cut through an elevated 
plateau, on which rest low ranees of partially bare hills, which 
aflford some grand vifews. Bluffs of rocks and bold rampart- 
like cliffs are of constant occurrence. The width of the valley 
varies from one to three miles. 

We are beside the Indian village Klonjec, from which it is 
thought Klondike comes. It matters little, however, our ob- 
jective point is here, we have come 66 miles from the Stewart 
River, the mighty Yukon continues its uninterrupted course 
to the sea, and we are now at Dawson, the city of gold. 


27 ^ 

The townsite is regularly laid out and comprises an area 
of 1 60 acres. A broad avenue separates the town from the 
Yukon. The south portion is on the lower side of the Klon- 
dike River where it joins the Yukon and the trail to the mines 
loads through it and along the side hill at the back. A few 
hundreds livie on this side. The north side, on the opposite 
bank, is a low and rather marshy piece of ground of about 100 
icres and is covered with moss. In cold weather a strong 
wind usually blows up the Yukon, and Dawson, being on the 
bend of the river, receives the full force of the blast. But 
when the temperature is very low a dead calm prevails. The 
population was over 5,000 in September and increasing daily; 
hundreds are scattered along the route. Most of the houses 
are constructed of logs, hewn so as to rest flat on each other. 
Poles are placed across the roofs and layers of moss and earth 
of fifteen or twenty inches cover them and serve to keep out 
the winter's cold. The heavy frost cracks green logs and enters 
the huts, making less comfortable the lives of the inmates. 
As in old Cariboo, so also in Klondike, the miner piles u]) 
great quantities of earth around the walls to keep out the cold 
blast which sweeps down from the north through the valley 
of the Yukon. 

The buildings of the Commercial Companies are large and 
substantial; these have double walls of boards with saw-dust 


The chief objects of interest are the dance halls and gam- 
bling games. Games involving very large sums are running 
night and day. The loss or gain of a couple of thousands is 
scarcely noticed. 

The dance halls open about eight o'clock in the evening 
and the morning is well advanced before the bands and the 
belles retire and the festivities draw to a close. Gallant beaux, 
equipped in blanket suits and heavy nailed boots grace the 
floor and pay $1.00 for the luxury. 

Drinks and cigars retail at 50 cents, and such is the thirst 
for beer that two breweries cannot supply the demand at $125 
a keg. 

Saloons are run "wide open" and do not pay a Hcense. The 
individual who does the honours, in liquidating his debt, 
passes hi'; sack over to the bar-keeper, who usually pours out 
enough dust to settle the amount. There are over sixteen 
saloons and their receipts are very large. One is said to have 



taken $60,000 in sixty days last spring, and on the day the 
successful miners took their departure on the first steamer of 
the season the receipts amounted to $6,500. 


Together with the general stores there are barbers's shops, 
laundries, restaurants, jewellery stores, physicians, a half a 
dozen or so, and real estate offices. The laundries charge 
$1.50 for washing a white shirt and 75 cents for flannels; shav- 
ing is 50 cents and a hair-cut $1.00; loaves of bread, and small 
at that, cost 50 cents. 

A drove of cattle arrived in Septeraber, and as a conse- 
quence two butcher's shops were opened and meat was sold 
at $1.00 a pound, which made work for the solitary dentist, 
who charges $3.50 to extract a tooth. 


Mechanics receive av ounce of gold for nine hours' work 
and some of them $20 to $25 a day. There was no sign, up to 
September, of any diminution of labourers' wages; they 
received from $10 to $15 a day. 


There are two churches, Catholic and Episcopal, and an 
hospital in charge of ladies of the order of Sisters of Charity. 




From careful enquiries from the best authorities, the quan- 
tity of gold said to have been taken out of Bonanza and 
Eldorado Creeks alone, up to September ist of last year, would 
weigh not far from five tons, and yet nothing like a fifth of 
the claims have been properly worked and some hardly pros- 
pected. It is hard to realize how plentiful the gold really is 
in some of the claims. Those yielding less than $2,000 or 
$3,000 a day scarcely excite a passing comment. 

Aside from the holders of rich rlaims everybody is in a 
state of feverish excitement and ready at any moment to make 
a grand dash for any new diggings. The slightest rumour of 
th.: discovery of a new creek is enough to cause a stampede, 
and women, not to be outdone, close their stores and join in 
the W''d rush. During these stampedes men rarely take time to 
cook i proper meal. OflF a man- will start with nothing more 


than a-"slap-jack" in his stomach and hope in his heart. For- 
tunes are made by men who work on the "lay," that is to say, 
the owners rent out their prospects to the workmen for one 
half the gold product. 


There are, in general, two ways of reaching the Klondike. 
The easier way, but the longer, is entirely by water, and occu- 
pies about thirty-five days. The traveller, taking ship at Vic- 
toria, sails ' direct for St. Mif hael, seventy miles from the 
mouth of the Yukon River, a distance of 2,200 miles. Enor- 
mous quantities of supplies are shipped here every year for the 
trading posts and missions on the river. . 

Steamers drawing four feet of Vater can ascend' the Yukon 
for a distance of 1,800 miles to the Felly River, and smaller 
beats, with powerful machinery would be able to pass the Five 
Finger Rapids, and ascend to the head of Teslin Lake. Navi- 
gation on the lower part of the river usually opens about the 
end of June and closes in the early days of October; the uj)per 
part of the river is clear of ice a couple of weeks earlier and ice 
begins to run again about the end of October. For two weeks 
suceeding September 29th of the present year, ice cut ofif all 
entrance to the river channel; then a hard thaw came, lasting 
a few days. On the i6th of October, at St. Michael, the 
weather indicated that winter had set in in earnest. 

Entering the river, which flows into Behring Sea through 
several mouths, the greatest north being about sixty-five miles 
from the most southern artery, the direction is easterly, but 
soon bends round to the north and follows a general northeast 
bearing for. about 200 miles to Nulato, where the river bends 
to the east. About sixty miles further on we come to Melozi- 
kakat. From this on the course is a little to the north of east 
to the Tanana River, which enters from the southwest and is 
several hundred miles long. Before reaching tlie Lower Ram- 
parts, abrupt limestone cliffs, Minook Creek is passed. Here 
gold was discovered, giving rise to a mild stampede in '96. 
At the Shaman Village the river broadens out, and further on 
islands occur, with which the river is thickly dotted for the 
next seventy or eighty miles. 


now abandoned, is situated nearly two miles above the 
mouth of the Porcupine, a great stream coming from the 
region of McKenzie Bay in the north, and is distant from St. 


Michael's about 1,300 miles. At the Yukon Flats, a short dis- 
tance above, the river has practically no confining valley and 
the bordering plains extend to the horizon on either side, 
unbroken by a single elevation, and having the appearance of 
the existence, at one time, of a lake basin or an abnormal ex- 
pansion of the river which is here divided into numberless 
channels by a labyrinth of islands. 

Owing to the unusual lowness of the water on the flats there 
were only two small steamers able to make the ascent of the 
river after August 12th. One of these was the Weave, whose 
arrival in Dawson with 160 tons^of provisions was hailed with 
rapturous delight. 

Near the head of the islands we pass the camp of Senatee, 
the most powerful chief in the whole Yukon country, and at 
one time a murderous cannibal; but time has now tanied his 
ferocious disposition, and a handful of tea is enough to draw 
from him a long oration descriptive of his enduring love for 
the white race. 


This is the distributing point for the mines of the district 
of Birch Creek, the upper waters of which are reached by a 
portage of six miles to the east. .Birch Creek is about 150 
miles long and runs nearly parallel with the Yukon from the 
bend above the flats. At Fort Cudahy, about 250 miles fur- 
ther up the river, there are several stores and places of amuse- 
ment. The post is at the mouth of Forty Mile River, said to 
have a total length of more than 100 miles of which the lower 
twenty-three are in Canadian territory. Its position on the 
map is defined by the intersection of the 64th degree of north 
latitude and 141st degree of west longitude. Its bars have 
yielded a large quantity of gold, one man having taken 
$52,000 in the season of '96. The average value of labour is 
$10 a day, andf bars yielding less have been abandoned. 

Fifteen miles below Forty Mile Post a large mass of rock- 
stands on the east bank, known as Old Woman's Rock, and 
according to an Indian legend represents a scolding wife who, 
for her viciousness, received a powerful blow from her hus- 
band that sent her clean across the river, here half a mile 
wide. On her landing she was converted into a mass of rock, 
which remains to this day a memorial of the unhappy woman. 
A similar rock on the west side, being known as Old Man's 
Rock, testifies to the power of the Shaman (akin to magi), 
and is all that remains of her husband who, seeing the terrible 
result of his unkindness, it is reasonable to suppose, was petri- 
fied with astonishment. Fort Reliance is about fortv miles 



from Cudahy and six and a half miles from the Klonjec vil- 
lage at the mouth of the best salmon stream in the whole 
Yukon country. It is a small river about forty yards wide at 
the mouth and of a beautiful blue colour. Lieutenant 
Schwatka, of the United States Navy, named it Deer River, 
but it is known to the world as the Klondike. 


The trail (so for as there is any trail) is from the head of 

the western arm of Lynn Canal and starts at Portage Cove, 
across the peninsula to the eastern banks of the Chilcat River, 
thence along the banks of the river for six miles, when it 
crosses and follows the western bank for about thirty miles to 
Klukwan on the Kleheena River, thence six or eight miles 
to the British line, thence about 150 miles to the Dalton Trad- 
ing Post on a branch of the Alsec River, thence in a northerly 
direction about 160 miles to Fort Selkirk at the mouth of the 
Pelly River. This is the favourite route for live stock. There 
is a good deal of timber along the route and large stretches of 
open grass land are met. 

THE POOR man's route. 

Tliis is an overland route, for which Kamloops and Ash- 
croft in the interior of British Columbia, and on the line of 
the Canadian Pacific Railway, are the outfitting points. The 
route lies over an old trail from Lac La Hache to Soda Creek 
along the Fraser River to Quesnelle, thence to a settlement 
on Fraser Lake 152 miles further on. In the next stretch of 
135 miles Mud, Nechaco and Blackwatcr Rivers are crossed, 
several Indian settlements are met and excellent grazing for 
cattle can be found. We next come to Stewart and from 
there to Hazleton it is 235 miles, or as the Indians say, "it is 
twenty pounds of fish," meaning seven days' travel. From 
Hazleton to Glenora is about 200 miles. From this point to 
TesHn Lake the country affords good grazing in the spring 
and early summer, as already mentioned. The distance be- 
tween these two points over a route recently discovered is said 
to be only 130 miles. 

The country in the region of the lakes is not now considered 
inaccessible, and if official reports of the United States and 
Canadian authorities, together with the statement of Mr. Neill 
McArthur, who spent eight years on the Yukon and tribu- 
taries, are to be relied upon, the country is exceedingly rich. 
But the old story of scarcity of provisions obliged men to 
abandon their prospects. • 



The following articles should be included in the outfit: i 
mortar and pestle, i sieve of 40-mesh, i magnifying glass, i 
magnet, 3 canvas sample bags, i compass, 8 lbs. of oakum, 6 
lbs. of pitch, I pair rowlocks, 3 lbs. candle wick, pail and 


Snow fell four days in January, five in March, four in April, 
one in May, two in September, six in November and six in 
December. In the same year it rained two days in April, four 
in May, twelve in June, three in July, eight in August, two in 
September, and one in October. The coldest day of the year 
was January 26th-— 68 degrees, and the warmest days were 
July 1st and 2nd — 81 degrees. 

WORK ON THE Trails. 

The material for three aerial cable freight tramways has ar- 
rived at Dyea. These facilities for moving freight should 
entirely alter and simplify the mountain climbing ordeal and 
render the journey to the lakes a far less arduous task. 


A large number of men are now at work constructing 
bridges and making a waggon road to the lakes where, it is 
fully expected, steamers will be ready to accommodate the 
great rush in the coming spring. The completion of these 
improvements will so alter the character of the journey as to 
make a degree of pleasure possible, where toil and trouble 
were experienced before. 


A tramway, intended to take boats,, passengers and their 
supplies, is being built around the rapids. A party of experi- 
efeced men have been engaged for some time piloting miners' 


The country is well timbered along the margin of the river, 
but inland the ground is covered with what is locally known 
as nigger grass. This is a coarse grass which falls each year 
and tangles in such a way as to make walking very difficult. 
On this a scrubby growth of trees is found extending up the 


mountains. Above the timber line the rocks are bare; the 
miners keep to the top of the ridge when travelling; below the 
recks are covered with from twelve to fourteen inches of moss. 
Prospecting is done in winter. The moss and decayed rub- 
bish is cleared away and fir^ is applied to burn down to the 
bed-rock. The frost gfives way before the fire twelve to six- 
teen inches in a day. Having burned down to bed-rock, it 
may be fifteen feet or so below the surface, and found the pay- 
streak, drifting is started. The upper part is usually barren, 
and the pay dirt lies on the rock beneath, and above it in some 
instances to a depth of four feet. 

The accompanying map of Alaska and the Northwest Ter- 
ritory, in which the mines are located, shows the Mackenzie 
River, referred to in the report of Commissioner Ogilvie, and 
an immt^ise extent of country that has never been explored. 

The mines so far discovered are the gravel deposits in an 
area of country small compared with all that in which other 
deposits^may be found. So far as thorough prospecting is 
concerned, the basin of the Yukon has Hardly been entered. 
The tributaries of the Yukon vary in length from 60 to 300 

That there are possibilities of discoveries of much more 
wealth cannot be doubted. 

* The headwaters of the Klondike have not yet been ex- 
plored owing to the difficulty in getting in provisions. Hun- 
ker Creek is held in high esteem. It has two forks, one known 
as Gold Bottom, the other as Last Chance; both are fully 
staked and each stands well. Too Much Gold Creek (so called 
because Indians saw specks of mica at the bottom) enters the 
Klondike fully fifty miles above the mouth, and as high as 
half an ounce has been taken out of a prospect hole. 

Recent reports from Sulphur and Dominion creeks confirm 
the early accounts of their richness. Dominion is longer than 
Bonanza and Sulphur is about fifteen miles long with a bot- 
tom averaging 600 feet from base to base of hills. Bear Creek- 
is said to be as rich as Bonanza below Discovery claim. Pros- 
pects on Victoria Creek have shown as high as $150 to a pan. 
Skookum Pup promises immensely. This stream enters 
Bonanza at No. 26 above Discovery. The two claims were 
sold for $25,000 and a little later $30,000 was taken from the 
lower claim and only three box lengths had been worked. 
The pay gravel runs thirty feet wide, ten feet deep and about 


a mile up the gulch. Eldorado meets Bonanza at No. 7 above 
Discovery, from which a single clean-up yielded 365^ ounces, 
and claim No. 67 is at the source of the main stream of the 
tributary. It is extremely rich from its mouth to the forks at 
No. 47. 

A party of twenty-five men, arriving in Victoria as late as 
December 3rd from Dawson, bring down astonishing ac- 
counts of the output of gold, not only of Bonanza and El- 
dorado, but also of Sulphur Gulch, Hunker, Gold Bottom and 
Last Chance Creeks. The problem of how to export the full 
volume of the yellow dust, which has been largely increased 
since the discovery of Davis, Mosquito, Cricken, Miller, 
Glacier and several other creeks, becomes a really serious one. 
At a modest calculation there will be twenty-five to thirty- 
five millions to add to the world's treasure next spring. 

It may be said that the opinion that ranks these placers 
peerless seems just. 

Indian Creek joins the Yukon midway between the Klon- 
dike and Stewart Rivers and all along the creek good pay 
has been found. Further up lies the head of several branches 
of the Stewart on which good prospects have been found. 
Gold has been found in several of the streams joining the 
Pelly and on the west side above Selkirk some work has been 
done with good results, and on a large creek, some thirty or 
forty miles below Selkirk, fair prospects have been found, but 
the difficulty of getting supplies prevented extensive pros- 

Gold has been found on the head of the Alsec River near 
Chilcat Inlet, and all along the Hootalinqua. There is a belt 
of silver-bearing ledges which extends from the Pelly to the 
Stickeen. In this region, without doubt one of the richest 
in the entire country, argentiferous galena is known to occur 
in great deposits. A very large percentage of the streams 
between the Sticke.en and Skeena give placers of $5.00 to $10 
a day. From the district of Teslin Lake, where gold quartz 
and especially copper ores abound, to Quesnelle, mineral-bear- 
ing ledges have been noted by early explorers. 

From what has been said it may be assumed that in all this 
country there is gold, while in this particular zone it is especi- 
ally abundant. This zone lies outside of the Rocky Moun- 
tains and distant from them by about 150 miles. 

There is no doubt that this country offers to men of fortitude 
and steadiness an opportunity to make more money in a given 
time than they possibly could make anywhere else. 

With the improved means of transportation new camps 
and towns are springing up like magic. 



Going into camp the first thing to do is to put up the tent; 
then a quantity of dry wood is collected to make a fire and 
prepare the hurried camp meal, which usually consists of flap- 
jacks (pan-cakes), bacon and coffee, after which the weary 
traveller lights his pipe and prepares a spring mattress of 
cedar and spruce boughs on which to spread his blankets or 
sleeping-bag. If he is in a sheltered spot the ice and snow 
and howling wind without will not disturb him. 


The latest rush was to Dean Creek, heading towards El- 
dorado and about two miles south of Dawson. 


So far from women being a bar or a hindrance to men, yie 
writer having seen them on the trail, believes they are rather 
a help and a spur when difficulties arise. Few men would 
falter or turn back when a brave woman was leading the way. 
Miss Alice Hyde was met at the summit of the White Pass, 
her face turned towards the wonderland of the North. The 
''first meadow" was ahead — a veritable quagmire — but noth- 
ing daunted she pushed on and to-day owns a claim having 
"pay-dirt" six feet in depth and ^ twenty-two feet in width. 
Writing from Dawson she says: "During the month of No- 
vember the sun only showed his face for about three hours 
each day, but there was twilight for two or three hours longer. 
The northern lights are very grand, the sky appearing to be 
ablaze at times; their beams darting through the air make a 
whizzing noise and cast a shadow on the ground. It is strange 
that the lights appear in the South in this latitude. 

"Once over the mountains the trip was by no means as 
I had been led to believe. When I think of the wildness and 
grandeur of the scenery along the route, and of being in the 
heart of a ' country I had only heard of as the home of the 
grizzly bear, I feel like one in a dream. There are about thirty 
families here. The town is very orderly, but not picturesque. 
Last summer there were only two things more plentiful than 
dogs — mosquitoes and gold dust. The mosquitoes were a 
plague, and no one should be without netting to protect the 
face; the dogs continue a menace to limb by day and a howl- 
ing horror by night. The people are very kind and seem 
anxious to help one another. No one should come without 
ample provisions as it is not considered likely that the trans- 
portation companies on the river will be able to bring up suf- 


r --^ 


ficient supplies for the thousands said to be on the way. 

"The following list may be of value to those intending to 
make the trip : 3 suits winter underwear, i suit Mackinaw and 
bloomers, 3 pairs wool stockings, i undervest (chamois), i 
warm dress, i short skirt of heavy material to wear over 
bloomers, i pair heavy wool gloves, 2 pair heavy wool mittens, 
I cap, I night dress (flannel), i wrapper, snow glasses, 2 pair 
sHppers, i pair walking shoes, i pair felt boots, 4 pair heavy 
stockings, i pair gum boots, 4 pair moccassins, i warm hood. 4 
suits summer underwear, i suit summer waist and bloomers, i 
dress (summer), 3 shirt waists, gloves to protect hands from 
mosquitoes, aprons, hat with broad brim to keep netting 
away from face, light night dress. 

'^The following articles should be packed in a box in suf- 
ficient quantities for the journey (a month) to prevent opening 
of large packages: Flour, bacon, germea, rice, beans, sugar, 
extract of beef, baking powder, salt, pepper, pilot bread, dried 
fruits, canned beef, chocolate and condensed cream. A sep- 
arate canvas bag will be found a convenience for the following 
articles of bedding: i feather pillow, 3 pair of good blankets, 
I piece of canvas, instead of sleeping bag, i water-proof sheet, 
I ready -sewed tick can be filled with dried moss, i small hand 
bag for sundries. A lady's outfit for a year will cost at the 
least $400 — this sum will not purchase a good outfit for a man. 


From observations by U.S. authorities in the Autumn of 
'89, the temperature first touched zero on Nov. 4th, and the 
last zero recorded in the spring of '90 was on April 30th. The 
lowest temperature being 59 ® below zero on January ist. 

Snow vStorms may occur between September and May. In 
June the sun rises at about 2 a.m. and sets at 10:30 p.m., 
giving more than 20 hours of daylight, and twilight the re- 
mainder of the time. The mean summer temperature rises. to 
between 60 ° and 70 ° . There is almost a continuous sun in 
summe*" time. Evaporation is very slow, owing to the thick 
moss which will not conduct the heat. 

Report from the Northwest Mounted Police under Stafi 
Sergt. Hayne of the Meteorological Service. 

Table showing the Highest and Lowest Temperature at Port Constantine, Yukon. 

Winter 1895 and 1896. 









High how 

High Low 

-140 a60 
-6 -16 

High Low 

High Low 

High Low 

High Low 

High Low 


ajo 15O 
ao II 


-ao 0-330 



30O 50 


-54 -61 

-5 -31 


8 -38 

50 30 
61 30 


II -I 

7 -6 

-I a -25 

-27 -45 

12 -20 

15 -31 



9 -8 

-31 -42 

-35 -55 

39 6 

21 I 

56 38 


I -9 

-21 -45 

-16 -42 

4 -ao 

33 14 

33 20 

55 37 
58 35 
03 33. 


a6 12 

-25 -49 

-48 -56 

-3 -15 

28 II 

43 37 


-13 -37 

-13 -26 

-13 -42 

9 -5 

39 19 

.WINTER OF 1896 AND 1897. 

No continuous fine weather occurred until May 4th, after 
which date and during the balance of the month the 
temperature frequently rose above 60 ° . The Yukon River 
froze up on Nov. 5th and broke on May 17th. Forty Mile 
River broke up on May 15th and on tho 31st the temperature 
reached 75 ° . In June the reading was 70 ° for twelve days 
and on the 31st, 80 ® . The highest temperature in July was 
83 o ; rain fell 11 day«, and in October 12 days. 

It may be said winter set in about the end of September. 
Zero was first touched on October 5th, and the average tem- 
perature of that month was 26 ® . 


The miner's cabin is a small affair, about 12x14 feet. The 
roof is heavily earthed and is usually very warm. Miners who 
do not work their claims in winter, very often, become very 
indolent, only eating those things most easily cooked. This 


manner of living sometimes leads to. scurvy. It is therefore 
best to procure the most varied outfit of food that can be 



It would be unwise to go to the Yukon placing any depend- 
ence on a certainty of obtaining what was required from the 
leading houses in the country. A number of steamers were 
unable to get up the Yukon River with supplies, (as mentioned 
in the notes on the St. Michael's roule.) The gold seeker 
should therefore go prepared to be independent for a year. 

For convenience tiie outfit is divided into three parts. 

It is winter that one must think of in preparing, not sum- 

3 Suits heavy wool underwear. 
3 Heavy wool overshirts. 

1 Heavy wool sweater. 

2 Pair trousers, one close-v/^oven for winter wear. Would 

be improved by cotton batting quilting in seat and 
over thighs and knees. 

2 Pair good overalls, one felt lined. 
I Vest. 

I Sack coat. 

3 Jumpers. 

I Coat (skin preferable with hair on, turned inside) with 

warm lining and belt. 
I Wide brim hat for summer. 
I Fur cap, large enough to pull down over head and with 

fur-lined ear flaps. 
I Wool neck scarf. 

1 Pair heavy nailed boots for prospecting on rocky 


2 Pair gum boots, leather soled and nail-protected, for 

work in the cold and marshy ground in winter. 

3 Pair seamless felt ankle moccasins. 

1 Pair of strong slippers for indoor wear. 

2 Pair heavy blankets (wool.) 

I Fur robe for sled travel and cover at night (sheepskin 
is good and not expensive) 
2o Yards mosquito bar netting for veiling to protect from 
mosquitoes in summer. 

1 Sheet rubber water-proof cloth, 12 feet square. 

2 leather or deer hide packing cases for small articles. 
Towels, etc. 


I Set pack straps. 
I Tent. I sleeping bag. 

1 Pair blue goggles to prevent snow blindness. 

In the matter of food, individual tastes differ, and the range 
of selection is vrider than with the clothing. I^ife in the 
Yukon is not all a picnic. One going there eats to live. 

The following is a good list : — 

300 Pounds flour. ^ 

50 " Germea, contains more nutriment than oat- 
meal, and is very easily prepared. 
15 •' Rice. 

150 " Bacon, boneless, sliced, packed in tins. 
100 " Beans. 

80 " Potatoes (peeled) evaporated. 
100 " Dried fruit, stoned and peeled, and seedless 

25. " Dried beef, chipped, in tin. 
25 " Tea. . ' 

80. " Sugar. 
.5 * ' Coffee extract. 

Condensed milk (20 cans). 
75 ** Vegetable biscuits. 
40 *' lyard. 
5 " Beef extract. 

2 " Pepper. 

• 10 " Baking powder. 
10 " Salt. 
60 " Dried soup vegetables. 

Most of the above articles should have water-proof covering. 
Avoid carrying waste — for example, the bone^ and rind of 
bacon, the stones of fruit, etc. All the articles which ai^e com- 
pressible have compressed. From the dried soup, vegetables 
and beef extract, a considerable quantity of soup can be made 
at one time, frozen in cakes, and then used as needed. To 
prepare it, thaw and heat over a fire, adding water. The 
packages should, as near as possible, be of a uniform weight, 
50 or 70 pounds, otherwise it will be difficult to handle them. 


I Stove and pipe, the latter in flat sheets, with seam 
edge crimped for joining, 

1 Fry pan, with folding handle. 

2 Pots, with cover and bail, sizes to nest together. 
I Kettle. 

1 Tea pot. 

2 Pans for bread baking, sizes to nest. 

W ■ — - 


2 Soup plates, blue or graniteware. 
2 Cups 

1 Can opener, knives, forks, spoons. 
Aluminum ware is light and easily cleaned. 


2 Gold pans, i flask quicksilver. 

1 3^ inch pick, with large eye, and one for heavy work, 

2 ha^i^les. 
I Shovel. 
I Axe. 

I Hatchet, hammer head, claw. 
I Timber saw. ' * 

I Riphand saw. 
I Brace and bits. 
I Saw set and file. 
I Square. 

1 Jack plane. 
ID pounds i2-penny nails. 
20 '* assorted nails. 

2 Pair 8 inch strap butts. ~ • 


6o Pounds candles. 
ID " Soap. 
I *' Glycerine. It does not freeze. Most valuable 
in the cold north for medicinal use. Good for cuts, 
bruises, frost bite. Apply externally for sore throat, 
use internally for bowel complaint. 
A combined rifle and shotgun, and ammunition. 
Fishing tackle, ico feet ^ inch hemp rope. 
A small roll of surgeon's plaster, antiseptic gauze for dress- 
ing w»unds, and an assortment of medicines in the form of 
pellets and capsules, particularly laxatives and remedies for 

This list will look large to men not accustomed to mining 
or out-door life. It is difficult for them to realize the require- 
ments for a year in the frozen North. To some of those who 
now go in search of gold the reward in the end will prove to 
have justified their action ; but will it to the many ? Any way^ 
if you must go, go prepared to preserve life andheaiLh iii<'. co 
mine without unnecessary waste of time, which in the \'ukon 
is both valuable and costly. To accomplish these things, be 
sure in preparing to have as efficient an outfit as money will 
buy. A dependence on what is being offiered as an outfit by 
San Francisco advertisers and others who know nothing about 
the requirements is only a form of premeditated suicide. 

PART a. 

eology of the Yukon. 

Notes on Alluvial and Metalliferous 


Resfr.rding the geology of the Upper Yukon Prof. Linderman, 
whi: explored the region in 'yj and '73, says: "The mineral 
zo'.r, c ji^tends east and west. The geological formation where 
' Oid 'h io und is a black slate of the carboniferous age. ' ' 

' ; > nk the entire country is mineral territory and the 
EafU 1 Alaskan range gold bearing. The placers being 
found i V. every stream leading from the range. I crossed and 
examined fifty-two streams and rivers and panned gold in all 
of them. I took gold out of the Katrin Hills about 230 miles 
north of Cook's Inlet. On Porcupine I found gold and some 

' * The dip rock varies from i x ° to 7 "^ . There were 
tremendous ledges of low grade ore that world be profitable 
t> big mills." 

'^'iis extract from Prof. lyinderman's report coincides, in a 
V laerf j1 manner, with the report of Boundary Commissioner 
Ogilvie, just issued. 


Gold has ever been, from the earliest ages, one of the most 
potent factors in the affairs of men. In what country or in 
what age it was first discovered history does not tell. Some 
accounts point to India, but all are mere conjecture. Certain 





it is however, that it possesses a remarkable influence and a 
power, before which men and even nations bow. With the 
discovery of gold cities and civilization spring into being and 
everywhere, as a result, the arts and sciences flourish. Several 
theories have been advanced to account for its origin, one is 
that gold in nature is always found associated with silver, and 
the ratio of gold to sib/er is not uniform. If silver never 
occurs without some go; ^^ foi lows that the gold has grown 
from the silver, and the vi ; proportions found in difierent 
mines are due to the length dme the growth has been going 
on. Another writer says, that the scientific world generally 
in later years concedes the fact that the metals are a product 
from the solutions precipitated by nature's electrical forces, 
and adds, it is also an ascertained fact that the nearer we 
approach to the North Pole the stronger are the electro- 
magnetic forces precipitated. 

Everywhere the origin of gold is the same. It is liberated 
from its rock matrix by the natural processes of the erosive 
agencies of frost and disintegration, and is placed where found 
by glacial action or by running water. The action of frost is 
principally in breaking the lodes in place into fragments, the 
grinding together of these fragments in the streams and 
gradually wearing away ^liberates the gold. Once freed it 
works its way downward to bedrock, while its once rock 
matrix is carried on as sand to the sea. "^ 


The water washing away gold-bearing matter carries the 
lighter particles down the stream while the heavier 
particles are left behind. The point where the stream changes 
direction is very often the richest. The sides of swift currents 
and the inner rim of curves should be examined. Where an 
accumulation of gravel occurs on the slope of a hill or along 
the course of a stream where gold has been found, a portion 
of it should be ' ' panned " as it may contain rich runs of gold 
near the bedrock. 

Wherever drift matter may be found or supposed to exist, 
do not neglect it though it be covered with vegetation. The 
deposits of rich alluvial matter found in the tributaries of the 
Klondike were covered with twelve and fourteen inches of 
moss. Along the course of a river there may be many bends, 
these bends are much more likely places to nnd rich deposits 
than where the stream is straight. In ages gone by the 
gold-bearing drifts may not have followed the existing course 
of streams, bnt may have been at an angle to the present 
channels, wherever these old channels are found careful 


search should be made and an endeavour to trace them from 
the points where the present streams cut away. The trouble 
taken in this work is often well repaid by the discovery of 
rich diggings. Not only should the beds, of streams and dry 
creeks at the bottom of valleys be examined, but the char- 
acteristics of loose rocks in gulches and ravines should be 
observed. Eddies and waterholes are likely places, and 
should the body of water in a stream be too great it must be 
turned by digging trenches. 

The appliancei. used in prospecting are the pick, shovel and 

TO "pan out" gold. 

The operation is very simple yet it requires some skill. 

Fill the pan with gravel or other matter, as you find it 
where working. Then pour in water and shake round about 
and from side to side, allowing all soluble matter to pass 
over the edge. This is done by tilting the pan to one side. 

It is convenient to have two pans or else a second vessel, 
so as to save time. In this way the rough work can be done 
rapidly, the fine stuff containing gold being thrown together 
and washed carefully over the other pan, the prospector 
keeping in mind the number of pans. A heaped pan-load 
weighs about twenty pounds, so that one pan represents the 
looth part of a short ton. The size of a gold pan used in 
California is about twenty inches circumference and four or 
five inches deep. 


A grain of pure gold is worth a little less than 4^ cents. 
The average of gold from many placers is about 3^ cents per 
grain. About lyi yards of gravel when dug is equal to one 
yard before being dug. Several pans of dirt can be measured 
' and the number to the yard determined . In sinking shafts 
for testing purposes energy should not be wasted in making 
them too large, 2% 

feet is large enough for considerable 


It is always the case that pay-dirt — dirt containing gold — 
lies next to the rock. This being the case it is necessary to 
clear away the gravel or dirt that lies between the surface and 
the bed-rock. 

In the Klondike the ground is frozen to a depth of between 
10 and 20 feet. To reach the bed-rock large files are made- 
wood is plentiful — this naturally thaws out the frost. The 
bed-rock being reached and sufl&cient pay being found to 



warrant a continuance of the work, the prospector then com- 
mences tunnelling or drifting. The dirt then removed is 
hoisted to the top and placed on the dump to await the coming 
of spring. 

' This method of thawing out the frozen ground enables the 
miner t© remove the pay-dirt, thus doing away with the long 
period of idleness. 


After working until April or May the water begins to run. 
Then the timber is prepared and the sluice boxes put in. 


After the course of the water is turned along the hill-side, 
a dam is built and sluice boxes erected. These boxes consist 
of a series of wooden troughs, having a suitable inclination, 
across the inside of the bottom small strips of wood are fixed. 
If the gold is fine the grade is slight, if coarse a greater pitch 
is given. By making one end of the box narrower than the 
other end, they can be made to fit one into the other, thus 
making a sluice of any length desired. The earth is then 
thrown in and the running water washes it away leaving the 
particles of gold in front of the bars on the bottom of the 
sluice boxes. . 


When it happens that a claim is too far from water, a rocker 
is used. The rocker is just what its name indicates. The 
dirt is placed within it and it is rocked until the dirt and gold 
have been shaken apart. 


No advantage would come to the prospector from a dis- 
cussion of the origin of mineral-bearing ores, but it is well 
something should be known of their depositions. 

It is a generally accepted belief that in creation 's early days 
the earth was a molten mass, and that the metalliferous ores 
were ejected from the interior by volcanic action through 
fissures it> the outer crust formed by a more or less lengthy 
period of cooling. 

In any particular district mineral lodes usually follow the 
same direction and will be found to run parallel. In some 
districts a second series occur and run right across the first, 
but these are generally less rich and are of a different nature 
of mineral. 



Prospecting on the hills may. be done with comparative ease 
\ if the country is exposed, by observing the outcrops and 
tracing them to lower ground. The sides of valleys, land 
slips, cliflfs, gulches and cafions exposed to view by the action 
of water should be studied carefully. On rough ground the 
direction of a lode will appear crooked. 

If " float " (fragments of mineral-bearing rock) occurs the 
prospector should follow it up, "panning" as he goes until 
he ceases to find any more float and the indications of colour 
in the pan lessen, then skirmish on the side or end hills for a 
lode, remembering that the float was washed down according 
to the law of gravity. If he succeeds it is not likely to be 
isolated, it may represent many more richer or poorer in the 

lyong exposure to the weather may have rendered the float 
quite barren, while the mother lode may be very rich. The 
nearer to the lode the more angular and less worn it is. The 
better locations for the occurrence of u:ineral deposits are at 
or near the contact of two different formations. Notice sudden 
changes and faults in the ridge. Search should be made for 
the-rock known to be the matrix of veins. The matrices are 
fluor spar and calc spar, but quartz is the most general. When 
the float is found to be honeycombed and stained a reddish 
brown by iron oxide, it is considered an excellent indication. 
Exposure to the atmosphere decomposed the iron or copper 
pyrites and stained the rock. When such rock is found no 
experienced miner will neglect the opportunity of having it 
tested. If he submits it to the camp expert, his opinion may 
be no more reliable than the average weather prophet. The 
best plan is to have an assay made by a competent authority, 
but the miner may make a test himself which, with some 
practice, may give fair results. 

The prospector should become familiar with the appearance 
of the oxides in the outcrop as they indicate the nature of the 
sulphides in the rock beneath. 


Silver is white, but when found on the surface is usually 
tarnished ; it can be flattened by beating and is easily cut ; the 
ore usually contains a percentage of gold and copper. It is 
found in limestone, sandstone, trap, porphyry and slate ; its 
gangue is usually quartz, fluor spar and calc spar. Silver 
glance (sulphide of silver) is usually found along with copper, 


lead, iron, zinc, antimony, etc. ; its colour is grej'^ish or blackish; 
in the sunlight it has a bright lustre. It is soft and is fusible 
at a very low temperature. 

If silver-bearing ores be heated in the fire and dropped into 
water drops of the metal will appear on the surface. 

Strenuous efforts are being made by the Bi-metallic League 
in the United States, England and other countries to advance 
the price of silver, but unfortunately the best efforts have so 
far- proved unavailing. The prospector, however, should not 
be indifferent to silver-bearing ores. Chloride of silver (horn 
silver) found in some districts — notably in the Slocan and 
Trail districts of B.C. — contains a very large percentage of the 
metal. This is a soft mineral looking like horn or wax and cut- 
ting like it ; occurs (often with carbonate of lead) in the upper 
parts of lodes. 

Ores of copper occur in every age and in lodes and deposits. 
The oxide stain of decomposed pyrites containing copper is 
black, unless iron is present ; the ores can be cut with a knife. 
A boiling solution of nitrate of soda and citric acid will dis- 
solve copper pyrites. The solution will cover a steel blade 
with a copper film. To test copper ores in camp, roast and 
drop while hot into grease. When exposed to a flame a green 
colour may be seen if copper is present. Native copper is 
found in tree-like and fanciful shapes — colour red. The ore 
usually carries gold and silver. 

Lead. — The ores of lead, like copper, occur in many rocks, 
some of which are limestone, granite, sandstone, &c. Galena 
and carbonate (white lead ore) are the principal ores of lead. 
They are often very rich in silver. Galena is easily known by 
its bright appearance when cut. Carbonate is of a dull colour 
and when broken up is like clay or earth. 


The first rocks formed were the lower crystalline, Archaean 
granite, and, as the earth cooled, solidified, forming a crust 
and, owing to the shrinkage of the interior, cracked and 
through these cracks streams of the molten matter poured. 
Then through disintegration aided by the destructive agency of 
carbonic acid gas, began the slow process of formation of sedi- 
mentary rocks, which in turn, from pressure and other causes, 
were to harden into rocks. 

Rocks consist essentially of minerals, and the minerals of 
the common rocks are of four groups: i. Quartz, called in 
chemistry silica; 2. silicates or compounds of silica ; 3. 
carbon ; 4. carbonates, or compounds of carbon. • 


Quartz is the commonest of all species and is one of the 
hardest minerals. Most sandstones and conglomerates con- 
sist largely of quartz (nearly every colour, generally white or 

Fragmental rocks include sandstones, shales and conglomer- 
ates. Stratified rocks are in beds and sedimentary are de- 
posited as a sediment out of the decomposition and washing 
down of the rocks of the age preceding. 

Crystalline Rocks. — Some metamorphic, some igneous meta- 
morphic rocks are those changed by heat or pressure; examples, 
marble, mica, schist, gneiss and much granite, &c. " 

Igneous rocks have come up melted through volcanic 
fissures from the heated interior of the, earth ; they include 
lavas, porphyry and granite. 

Porphyritic rocks are those having distinct feldspar crystals. 

Sandstones are made up of particles of sand cemented 
together; colour gray, brown, white, red, &c; 

Conglomerate. — Consolidated gravel. 

Slate. — A slaty rock imperfectly formed (schists applied to 
certain slaty rocks. ) 

Metamorphic Rocks. — Granite, a crystalline rock of quartz, 
feldspar and mica or hornblende : colour light or dark gray. 

Gneiss — Is like granite in construction, and is made up of 
the same minerals as granite, only containing them in parallel 


Schists— Mica schist consists of fine layers of quartz and 
mica ; talc schist, fine layers of quartz and talc ; chlorite 
schist, fine layers of quartz and chlorite ; hornblende schist, 
fine layers of quartz and hornblende. 

Feldspar — Colour usually white or red, sometimes gray, 
black or green, so very hard will scratch glass. 

Talc — A greenish, yellowish white, or sometimes colourless 
mineral of a pearly or resinous lustre. Is greasy to the touch, 
soft, yields to the finger nail. 

Chlorite — A dark green, generally foliated and scaly min- 

Hornblende — Of many varieties, mostly greenish black, 
and also whitish colour. 

Fluor-spar — Is usually purple, sometimes yellow, white, 
green or blue. If heated in a dark place a phosphorescent 
light appears, not unlike a precious stone. It is soft. 

Calc-spar — (Carbonate of lime) generally transparent, and 
of a gray-rose, honey-yellow or violet shade. 


Mineral Deposits — The deposit rests on the foot-wall and 
that covering the deposit is the hanging wall. These are 
known as the floor and roof respectively. 

The Strike or Course of a Deposit — is the angle formed 
with the plane of the lode and the plane of the horizon. Its 
dip is the inclination downward measured in degrees from the 
horizontal. When the dip is great it is measured Irom the 
vertical and is then termed the underlie or hade. 

Out-crop — The portion of the mineral deposit at the surface 
is known as the out-crop or apex. 

Cross Courses — These are veins coursing at nearly right 
angles to the chief lodes of any particular district. 

A Shaft — Is a pit sunk down from the surface. 

Levels — Are horizontal excavations along the course of a 
vein, or horizontal passages by which access is gained tc> 
workings of a mine. 

A Slope — Is a working from which the ore is extracted. 
Above a level the working is an overhead or back slope. An 
" underhand " slope is the working downward from the floor 
of the level. 


Gunter's chain, 66 feet long, is most frequently used in 
measuring lengths. 
To find the area in a piece of Ground : 

1. If rectangular, multiply the length by the breadth. 

2. If triangular, multiply the base by half the perpendicular 


1728 cubic inches equal i cubic foot 

27 '• feet " I " yard 

4 feet X 4 feet x 8 feet=i28 cubic yards, , . . " i cord wood 


24 grains equal i pennyweight (dwt. ) 

20 pennyweights " i ounce (oz.) 

12 ounces " i pound (lb.) 

Standard gold consists of 22 parts pure gold alloyed with 
two parts copper or other metals and according to the quantity 
of alloy is called 9, 12, 15, or 18 carat — i.e^ that number of 
parts of gold out of 24. Standard silver is of finest 1 1 oz. 
2 dwts. fine to 18 dwts. alloy. 






A cubic foot of pure gold weighs 1,210 lbs., pure silver 655 
lbs., cast iron 450 lbs., copper 550 lbs., lead 7 10 lbs., platinum 
1,220 lbs. 

A ton weight of the following will average in cubic feet : 
earth 21, clay 18, river sand 19. 


The method of locating a placer claim is simple. The 
prospector must not exceed 100 feet up and down the creek, 
in the general course of the valley. The width of the claim 
can run from base to base of the hills. If there are no claims 
located on this particular stream, the claim is known as the 
" discovery claim, " and the stakes are marked O; The next 
claim up the creek is marked No. i , as is the next going down 
the stream. There can be but two claims marked No. i on 
any one stream. Discoverer's claim may be 500 feet. 

Every miner and employer of a miner will require to take out 
a license, the fee for which will be $10. In case of a company it 
will be $50 or $100, according to the amount of the capital stock. 

The fee for recording and renewing mining claims will be $1 5. 

A royalty of lo.per cent on the gold mined will be collected 
by the government if the claim produces $2,500 per year; 
smaller claims are exempt. 

If a prospector should locate a claim on any creek or river on 
his way to Dawson, he will not have a legal title to it unless 
he is in possession of a license. The towns in which certificates 
are issued are Victoria, the Provincial capital of British Co- 
lumbia; Vancouver, the terminus of the C.P.R., and Nanaimo, 
the chief seat of the coal industry of the coast. From these 
points steamers run to the North. 

The Mining Regulations are not printed here, -;, 1 is 
expected they will undergo some change in the early spring 
of 1898. 


On the routes to Dawson City are Glenora, head of navi- 
gation on the Stickine River, Lake Tagish, about 72 miles 
from the coast. Fort Selkirk, on the Pelly River, a post near 
Klukwan, on the Dalton Trail, and Dawson City. 

Invoices of goods should be produced in duplicate when 
they are purchased, and collections will be made in accordance 
with prices therein named, not on the value of the goods 

where the collection is made. On most goods subject to 
ad valore^ duty, the weight of the receptacle is included and 
assessed the some as the contents. The exceptions are ~ 

Miners blankets in use, personal clothing in use, cookine 
utensils m use such quantities of each af will make thf 
owner comfortable for a reasonable time 
oftL^'free!'^"'*''^'''^"^ imported exclusively for the mining 

The duties on the most important articles are .—Flour 60 
per barrel; beans, .15 per bushel; bacon, .2 per pound mea? 
and meat extracts, .25 ad valorem; and tibacc^ .50 speci^c 


On the History, Resources and Probable Future of the Yukon Country. 

The distinguished explorer, Wni. Ogilvie, F.R.G.S., of the 
Alaska Boundary Commission, having returned to Victoria 
after an absence of several years in the Nor^^h, addressed a 
public meeting on November 5th; on the subj ct of the Yukon 
Goldfields. As no other report of equal weight and import- 
ance, on this subject, has reached the outside world, the follow- 
ing extracts from the lecture will be read with interest as an 
authoritative statement of facts. 

After describing the routes he 'said : 

*' In 1872, September 2nd, two Irishmen named Harper and 
F. W. Hart and Sam Wilkinson an Englishman, left Manson 
Creek to go on a prospecting trip down the Mackenzie River. 
They made their way down to Nelson River, where they made 
a cache and a dug-out with which to descend the river. 

In 1 89 1, he, Mr. Ogilvie, was sent by the Dominion to the 
Northeast portion of the Province, and going in the trail fol- 
lowed by Harper saw the cache they had told him about in 
1887. Harper and his companions made their way down to 
the Liard River, where Wilkinson left them, and then down 
the Mackenzie across to the Peel and thence over to Bell's 
River, an affluent of the Porcupine, down the Porcupine to 
Fort Yukon, (380 miles from Dawson) and up to White 
River a distance of 400 miles, where they found some gold. 
The result of their prospecting was as follows: On the Nelson, 
nothing; on the Liard, colours; on the Mackenzie, nothing; 
on the Peel, fair prospects; on the Porcupine, colours; and 
prospects everywhere along the Yukon. Provisions giving 
out they made their way down the Yukon to St. Michael's. 

Next summer Harper returned and built Fort Reliance, 
six and-a-half miles from the Klondyke. and for many years 
traded and hunted, but never prospected on that river, 
and if he had he would not have found anything, for it is a 
swift mountain stream which has washed away all the fine sand 
and gravel, consequently the gold would sink out of sight, 



m ' t^ 

and in those days no prospectinjT was done but on the bars 
in the rivers and creeks. 

In 1882 gold was found on the Stewart River, and in 1886 
Harper estabHshed a trading post at Fort Selkirk, and in the 
same year some prospectors found gold at Forty-mile, (so 
called because it is forty miles from Fort Reliance). 

This took all the miners up to Forty-mile, coarse gold be- 
ing what every miner is looking for, and the excitement con- 
tinued to draw till 1891, when gold was found on Birch Creek, 
six miles from Circle City and nearly 200 miles below Forty- 

This discovery of course boomed Birch Creek md in 1891 
everyone went down there. 

Gold was found at the head of Forty-mile on Napoleon 
Gulch and was rich in nuggets. Franklin Gulch is pretty 
rich as are also David, Mosquito and Chicken Creeks. The 
last named was discovered in 1896 and was considered very 
rich until overshadowed by Eldorado and Bonanza. 


The discovery of gold on the Klondike (Indian name Tron- 
dak, or diuck) was made by three men, Robert Henderson, 
Frank Swanson and another named Munson, who in July, 
1896 were prospecting on Indian Creek. They proceeded 
up the creek until they reached Dominion Creek, and then 
crossed over the divide and found gold bottom, got good pros- 
pects and went to work. 

Provisions running short they made their way to Sixty-mile 
to obtain a fresh supply, where Harper had established a trad- 
ing post. Striking upwards to Forty-mile they came across a 
Califoruian, George Carmack, and Two Canadian Indians, or 
King George men,* as they called themselves. 

Now one of the articles of the miner's code of procedure is 
that when he makes a discovery he shall lose no time in pio- 
claiming it, and the man felt bound to make the prospectors 
acquainted with the information that there was rich pay to be 
got in Gold Bottom. The two Indians showed a route to 
this creek and from there they crossed over the high ridge to 
Bonanza (two miles from the mouth of the Klondike.) 

From there to Eldorado, which joins the Bonanza about 
midway, its length is three miles, they climb over the ridge 
and went to Gold Bottom, (twelve miles above the mouth of 

^Canadian Indians are called King George men to distinguish them 
from those of the United States. 


the Klondike. Here they did half a day's prospecting, and 
came back, striking into Bonanza about ten miles beyond 
where they they took out from a little nook in a few pans 

$12.75 (^2 I2S.), 

In August, 1896, George Carmack went down to Forty- 
mile to get provisions. He met several miners on his way 
and told them of his find, showing the $12.75 which he had 
put in an old Winchester cartridge. 

Well, that tells the story of the discovery of the creeks, that 
have excit'id and will continue to excite thousands for many a 
day to come. 


" Boatload after boatload of men went up at once. Men 
who had been drunk for weeks in fact had been tumbled into 
the beats and taken up without being conscious that they 
were travelling. One of these only woke up when he was a 
third of the journey, and he owns one of the best claims on 
the Klondyke to-day. 

The whole creek, a distance of about twenty miles, giving in 
the neighbourhood of about 200 claims was staked in a few 
weeks. Eldorado Creek, eight miles long, providing eighty 
claims, was staked in about the same time. 

Boulder, Adams and other gfulches were prospected, and 
gave good surface showings, gold being found in the gravel 
in the creeks. Good surface prospects may be taken as an 
indication of the existence of very fair bedrock. It was in 
December, 1896 that the character of the diggings was estab- 
lished. " Twenty-one," above Discovery on Bonanza, was 
the one which first proved the value of the district. Claim 
No. 5, Eldorado was the next notable one hf le, a pan of $112 
was taken out. There was then a pan of even greater amount 
on No. 6, and they continued to ;un up every day. The news 
went down to Circle City, which emptied itself at once and 
came up to Dawson City. The miners travelled at all hours 
of the day and night, some with provisions, some without." 


Bonanza and Eldorado Creeks aflford between them 278 
claims; the several affluents will yield as many more, and all 
of these claims are good. Mr. Ogilvie had no hesitation in 
saying that about 100 of those on Bonanza will yield upwards 
of $30,000,000. Claim 30, below on Eldorado, will yield a mil- 
lion in itself; then others will yield from $100,000 up. These 



two creeks will, he was quite confident, turn out from $60-, 
000,000 to $70,000,000, and he could safely say that there 
was no other region in the world of the same extent that has 
offered in the same length of time so many homestakes — 
fortunes enabling the owners to go home and enjoy the. 
remainder of their days. He would state a fact, he said, and 
one that was easily demonstrated, which was that we had in this 
province an area of from 550 to 600 miles in length and from 
100 to 150 miles in width, over the whole of which prospects 
had been found, and we had from 90,000 to 100,000 square 
miles which, with better facilities for the transportation of 
food, would be the largest, as it was the richest, goldfield the 
world had ever known. 

Stewart and Pelly Rivers, in the gold-bearing zone, also 
give promising indications. Everywhere good pay had been 
found on the bars, and there was no reason why when good 
pay was obtained on the bars the results should not be richer 
in the creeks.. 


In regard to quartz claims, seven have already been located 
in the vicinity of Forty Mile and Dawson, and there was also 
a mountain of gold-bearing ore in the neighbourhood yield- 
ing from $5.00 to $7.00 a ton. It may be mentioned here that 
the great Douglas Island quartz lode yields about $2,50 per 
ton, but it is on the coast, the other inland. 


A party arriving as recently as the 9th of December report 
the discovery of a quartz ledge which is said to have been 
traced through a number of rich mining streams of the dis- 
trict. If this should prove to be the mother lode of the 
wealth of Eldorado, the permanency of the Upper Yukon as 
a great mining camp will be assured for years to come. 




Addressed to Vicar-General Jonckaw, Victoria, B.C. 



The very interesting story told by the missionary arch- 
bishop who, while carrying the message of -i^tianity into 
a remote and unexplored land, met with a saci , f igic md, 
will have another interest for ihe traveller to the Yukoti that 
of being a faithful record of a journey fraught with many 
hardships and some dangers. 

The Archbishop left Victoria, as he tells us, in July '86, full 
of hope for the success of his mission, and proceeding on his 
way crossed the mountains and reached the upper waters of 
the Yukon at Lake Bennett, where he wrote the following 
account of his travel: — 

"It was on July 13th (1886) as you know," the diary reads, 
"that 1 left Victoria to establish a permanent mission in the 
heart of this territory and carry out the design I had con- 
ceived during my first exploration of the Yukon country in 
1877 for the Christianizing of the natives. 

"Two routes lay before us, either the mouth or the head- 
waters of the Yukon I went to Alaska through the mouth 
of the Yukon in 1877. This time I chose the other route — 
first, because, though the mouth of the river is easy of access, 
yet the navigation of the river up stream is long, tedious and 
diflficult, whereas the trip from Victoria to the headwaters of 
the Yukon is almost one straight line a little more than 1,000 
miles and lasted only thirteen days. It is true the portage 
across the Coast Range and some of the rapids is a labour 


of the most exb^'istive kind, but those difficulties once over- 
come navigation down the Yukon River from one end of 
Alaska to the other is free from toil and danger, and com- 
paratively pleasant. 

"We left Juneau on Monday, July i8th at 7 p.m.. Next 
morning we were steaming up Lynn Canal, which is flanked 
by ranges of lofty peaks, each gorge of which is filled with a 
glacier almost to the edge of the salt water. The Indians left 
tl:eir former village on the Chilcat Inlet and built up a new 
one on the Chilcoot Inlet, making more than a living by pack- 
ing for white men. They extort as much money 
as they can froiii every miner that crosses the country. Not 
only did they charge ^13 per 100 pounds, but they made us 
pay them for guiding us, for ferrying us across the river, for 
Iboking after our safety and that of our packs, as they termed 
it, and then they exacted a 'present' for having faithfully stuck 
to their bargain. 

"All arrangements being made, we started for the Chilcoot 
village in a canoe and reached the mouth of a small river 
called the Taiay. Here we met a most kindly disposed 
Hibernian, named Healey, who placed us under many and last- 
ing obligations. Finally we left Healey's place and salt water 
navig"'ion to ascend the rugged and lofty slope of the Coast 
Range, and to force our way through a pass into the basin of 
the Yukon. We formed a numerous party. Besides the five 
of us there were five miners and some sixty Indian packers, 
some with over a hundred pounds on their backs, but all in 
good spirits and great glee to begin our wearisome and ardu- 
ous trip. It was Saturday, July 24th, the feast of Saint Fran- 
ciscus Solano, whose mass I had celebrated in the morning. 
A fleet of canoes conveyed most of our baggage to the head of 
canoe navigation, some seven miles from Healey's place, but 
we had to walk. We first waded through the tributary of the 
Taiay, where we had the water to our thighs and were sub- 
sequently carried by canoes five times across the Taiay and 
moved into our camp early in the afternoon, the > ater being 
judged too high by the Indians to be forded. We said good 
bye to our canoes and slept soundly all night at id prepared 
ourselves the following morning for the two worst crossings 
of the Taiay, in one of which a traveller lost his life last sum- 
mer. The first crossing was pretty rough. 

"Advancing cautiously with heavy gum boots over gravel 
pebbles and large boulders through the swift current of a 
seething, foaming torrent, nerving myself to the utmost to 
sustain the powerful velocity of the liquid element which 


57 ^ 

seemed at every moment to lift me from my feet, I reached the 
opposite bank, having had the water well nigh to my hips, but 
though the water was icy cold, covered with perspiration and 
panting for breath and my heart beating violently. A few 
minutes were spent in drying ourselves from our drenching, 
after which we directed our steps to the next crossing, which 
we found worse than the former. Here we stood at the mouth 
of the Canon, from which the Taiay, nearly fifty feet wide, 
burst forth at the rate of thirteen miles an hour. Some of the 
Indians formed a chain, taking each other by the hand and 
marching in a line which extended downward with the cur- 
rent. Preceded by an Indian packer and followed by another, 
I resolutely marched 


which seemed as if boiling around me. I was very success- 
ful until I found myself within a few yards of the other bank, 
when the velocity of the water forced my feet so wide apart 
that I felt I could hold the ground no longer. One of my 
knees bent in spite of me, notwithstanding all the efforts I 
made to brace myself up against the whirling, dashing tor- 
rent. One of the Indians saw the danger I was in and reached 
mc his hand, and so I found my way out of the wild and furi- 
ous stream. All of my companions behaved most gallantly 
and appeared to encounter less trouble and difficulty than I 
experienced. We now entered the narrow gorge through 
which the Taiay flows, marching most of the time due north 
and on the right or eastern bank, going up stream of the river. 
We crossed it again and again, passed several of the tribu- 
taries, sometimes on logs, at others wading through the water. 

"At last, about 6 p.m., wearied and hungry, we arrived at 
the foot of the glacier, the principal feeder, I presume, of the 
Taiay, and there we saw a splendid camping place made by 
Nature, consisting of immense boulders so arranged that they 
gave perfect shelter both from wind and from rain. This place 
is called Sheep Camp, because I suppose it used to be the 
favourite resort of mountain sheep, and in one part of it the 
boulders were so ingeniously placed alongside of one another 
that they form a perfect hiding place, called by the Indians 
'Stone House.' 

"The next morning, July 26th, we were all up at four 
o'clock and left Sheep Camp a little after six full of courage 
and eagerness to reach and pass the summit. Here the ascent 
became very steep until we stood at the foot of an almost per- 
pendicular wall formed of rocks, boulders and stones of every 


description, the top of which appeared to be lost in the 
clouds. It was a novel sight to see our Indian packers ascend- 
ing the natural ladder, clambering the best they could, help- 
ing themselves with poles and now and then with their hands, 
and ai)pearing at some distance as if standing one on the head 
of the other, the highest ones disappearing in the fog. The 
summit is said to be 3,800 feet high. We reached it at six 
o'clock p.m. The view is decidedly beautiful. To the south 
we commanded the view of the Cafion through which we had 
painfully travelled, the snow-capped mountains on the side of 
Lynn Canal forming the backg^round. East and west of us 
were high peaks, which, however, were hid from our sight by 
clouds and thick fog, and north of us lay the extensive coun- 
try of the Yukon, and a red looking peak touring above the 
rest of the mountains, the foot of which, as we saw afterwards, 


of Alaska. At our feet lay a carpet of snow and ice of dazzling 
whiteness, and below still, a beautiful lake, with azure water 
and the edges covered with i e. If, as it appears reasonable, 
we consider that lake — Crater Lake — as the source of the 
Yukon, then it is a remarkable coincidence that T saw the 
Yukon the first time this year on the same feast that I did in 
1877, the feast of St. Anne." 

In that year the Archbishop went into the country from St. 
Michael's at the mouth of the Yukon. His reason, he said, 
"in coming this way lay in the object he had in view of visit- 
ing new regions and of exploring countries never before 
visited, and labouring among natives never preached to by 
missionaries of any denomination. 

"Great care was needed to pass the snow and ice, which 
formed a steep incline from the edge of the mountain to the 
edge of the lake. A single mis-step would have sent us slid- 
ing down, and once started, there was no possibility of stop- 
ping before reaching the edge of the lake below. Fortunately, 
by extreme caution, we avoided all accidents and got safely 
over the dangerous spot. We had scarcely got over the sum- 
mit when we met two white men returning for their sled, 
which we had noticed a few minutes before. 

"These two men had been abandoned before reaching the 
summit by their Indian packers and were now themselves 
attending to their own packing, and as I afterwards saw, they 
got along remarkably well. After marching down the hill, 
either on the bank of the river that flows out of the Crater 


Lake or at a short distance from it, we reached the shores of 
a small lake — Linderman Lake — some six miles long by one 
mile wide, and camped at the mouth of the river we had been 
following all day long. It was about 3 p.m. when we reached 
the lake, having made in a little less than three days a trip 
of only twenty nine miles from Healey's Camp at the mouth of 
the Taiay. Next day a serious disappointment happened to 
us. Antoine Prevost, who had followed us from Juneau and 
on whom we relied to help us in building a raft, left us and 
disappeared without saying a word. Fortunately three of the 
miners with whom we had travelled most gene/ously offered 
their services to help in building a raft and took on their own 
that part of our luggage which two Indians had left behind, 
after taking the rest to the foot of Linderman Lake. Here 
that you may the better understand our movements I ought 
to describe 


Crater Lake, as I have already mentioned, lies this side, that 
is, northeast of the divide, and is the first reservoir containing 
water that empties into the Behring Sea, a distance of more 
than 2,000 miles the way the river flows. From this lake an 
impetuous torrent rushes foaming through a narrow channel 
and empties into Linderman Lake, which js fed also by an- 
other farther west. There is a northwest current in this lake 
plainly visible, and it finds its outlet through a narrow pass 
in which the water furiously dashes over rocks and flows into 
Bennett Lake. The river furnishing the link between Bennett 
Lake and Linderman is less than a mile long. It is not safely 
navigable and is consequently avoided by a portage called 
Perrier Portage. Lake Bennet, some twenty-seven miles 
Icng, discharges itself through a short river into Lake Nares, 
and this one into Tagish Lake, after which the river nuis 
swiftly through narrow cations until it reaches Lake Le Barge. 
Past Lake Le Barge the river follows a uniform course, re- 
ceiving several very large tributaries, until after uniting itself 
with Stewart River, it definitely receives the name Yukon and 
flows placidly toward the Behring Sea. 

"I left our camp and our party at the head of Linderman 
Lake in a small canoe with two Indians to remain at the foot 
of the same lake some six miles distant and to keep an eye on 
the baggage which those Indians had already conveyed there 
in their canoes. The next day Father* Robaut joined me, 
arriving also in a canoe and bringing my altar so that on the 
following morning, for the first time, I had the happiness to 






celebrate the holy sacrifice of the mass on the headwaters of 
the Yukon where I believe no mass had ever been celebrated 

"But where was I? Was I still in Alaska, inside of the line 
that runs parallel with the coast, or was I in the vicarate apos- 
tolic of British Columbia, or in my own diocese in the far 
end of the Northwest Territories of the Dominion? This is 
difficult to determine. At all events, before leaving the place 
I nailed to a tree the following inscription: 

"Archbishop of Victoria, V.I., accompanied by Fathers 
Tosi and Robant, camped here and oflfei:ed the holy sacrifice, 
July 30th, 1886." 

"The miners who had traveled with us here divided into 
two parties, each party building a raft for itself at the head 
of Lindetman Lake, because the timber was not long enough 
to be sawn into planks to make a boat. 

"The next day Father Tosi and Fuller arrived with the 
other party of miners on a raft. That day we had a sumptuous 
repast on a duck killed by Fuller. Four days previous it was 
Father Robaut that shot our dinner for us, in the shape of a 
pfirtridge. After some deliberation it was decided that the 
three miners, with Father Robaut and Fuller, should preceed 
on a raft to a place where the size of the timber would justify 
them in stopping for the construction of the boat. They went 
twelve miles distant, camping on the west shore of Bennett 
Lake, and began to saw planks with their whip-saw." After 
referring with numerous interesting illustrations from his 
personal experience to the plentiful supply of both game and 
fish, the foi:nier principally bear and mountain sheep, in the 
region which they had reached, the Archbishop in his diary 

"Without delay we loaded oilr boats with all our stuff and 
returned at once, reaching the camp where we had left the two 
miners on Thursday morning. We discharged our cargo and 
th2 miners placed on board of our boat all that part of our 
baggage which they had been compelled previously to put 
ashore and leave in my charge, and as Father Losi had been 
left alone on so many days, I volunteered 


in my turn; so that the two miners left with Father Tosi, 
Father Robaut and Fuller, leaving me alone to watch 
over our baggage. The arrangement was that as soon as the 


miners had reached their new camping place, the boat would 
undergo a thorough overhauling, and after being made safe 
and watertight should be brought back to my camp to load 
our baggage and to make a definite start down the lakes and 
the Yukon. During my lonely stay at that camp on the shores 
of Lake Bennett nothing remarkable occured except a visit I 
received from four miners who had travelled overland thirteen 
days from the Salmon River, being nearly starved to death. 
I gave them supper, as many provisions as they needed to 
reach Juneau, and they were very grateful indeed, particu- 
larly one who hailed from Ireland and whose name was Har- 
rington. It was nothing but shortness of provisions that 
diove them from their camping ground. Their prospects were 
good, but the water remained too high to allow them much 
work in the shape of mining. They said they intended to 
return next spring a little earlier than they had done this year. 
To complete my account of my lonely stay at camp No. 3 on 
the lakes I must say that I availed myself of the absence of 
others to subject my clothing to washing and re- 
pairing. So Saturday, August 14, was a general washing day, 
not only the altar linen but towels, handkerchiefs, etc., under- 
went a thorough cleansing. If you had seen my clothes pins 
you would have been very much amused; some of them burst, 
but of course my discomfiture was all to myself. Monday, 
August 16, was general mending day. I had to remain under 
my blankets to subject some of my clothes to necessary repairs; 
perfectly safe from any intruders' visit. I hope you will pardon 
me the minuteness of these private details. They serve at any 
rate to give a complete description of a missionary's life in a 
new country. The aspect of the country- is grand beyond 
description. The moufitains on either side of the lake are lofty, 


" They range, I presume, from three to four thousand feet 
above the level of the sea. Balsam, fir, hemlock, alder, cotton- 
wood and willow are on the slopes of the mountains. I saw 
wild salmon berries, etc., I noticed also some rose bushes, but 
the flowers were not yet open. Eagles, gulls, ducks, part- 
ridges, robins, kingfishers, swallows, some other birds and 
some singing birds gave a lively appearance to the country, 
even around the lakes. Bears are numerous, so are also 
ground squirrel, rabbits and mountain sheep. Father Tosi saw 
an animal like a very large cat standing on the other side of 
the river connecting Linderman and Bennett lakes, but the 
shouting of some Indians frightened it away. It is supposed 


to be a lynx. Finally, the abundance of fish is literally incred- 
ible. To my great joy my lonely stay on the west shore of 
Bennett Lake was brought to an end on Thursday, August 
19th, by the return of Father Tosi, Robaut and Fuller in our 
own boat, which was now strong and^water-tight and capable 
of carrying us down the Yukon River. We made a definite 
start the following day, Friday, August 20th, followed by the 
two miners in their own boat. 

"On Saturday evening we camped at the foot of Bennett 
Lake. We reached the foot of Tagish Lake the following 
evening, passed Lake Marsh on Monday and entered the river 
that connects Lake Marsh with Lake Le Barge about noon 
on the same day. 

"It was on the river between Marsh, or Mud Lake, and 
Lake Le Barge that we met the most serious obstacle to navi- 
.gation in the shape of a succession of rapids about four miles 
long. These rapids are between two canons — Miles Canon 
and White Horse Caiion. Each cafion is less than one mile 
long, and they necessitated, consequently, two portages, the 
packing over which was done by ourselves." 

The Archbishop, after describing the rapids, continues: — 

"We left camp at the foot of White Horse on the afternoon 
of the same day, killed four ducks and went into camp two 
miles below the mouth of Takeena River.- Next day, August 
27th, we camped at the head of Lake Le Barge, which is 
about thirty-two miles long, and was crossed by us on Satur- 
day, August 28th. Finally starting again on Monday, which 
was yesterday, we made sixty-five miles in eight hours, trav- 
elling not infrequently at the rate of ten miles an hour. A 
loon brought down by the gun of Fuller gave us last night 
our supper. We are now about to push on northward, and 
are within a few days' navigation from the mouth of the 
Stewart River, where we shall decide on selecting our winter 

Arriving at the Big Salmon (or Ton) River on the 31st 
August in the year referred to, the Archbishop said adieu to 
Fathers Tosi and Robaut and continued down the river, and 
it is a matter worthy of note that he camped on the present 
site of Dawson City and celebrated the mass of the Holy 

The following entries clearly show the growing insanity of 

"21st October. — Colere de Fuller au dejeuner, m'accuse de 
vouloir le miner. (Anger of Fuller at breakfast; accuses me 
of trying to ruin him.) 

1 2th November. — Fuller fn 'accuse d'avoir refuse de lui ap- 
prendre le Russe. (Accuses me of refusing to teach him the 
Russian language.) 

"Sunday, 21st — Fuller me demande pourquoi j'ai envoye un 
de nos Indiens en avant pour bruler le traineau et lui — menie. 
(Fuller asks me why I sent an Indian ahead of him to burn up 
our sleigh and himself, Fuller.) 

"24th November. — Fuller veut etre tue par moi tout-de- 
suite (Fuller wishes me to have him killed at once.") 


Fuller lui dit qtie Walker* lui avait predit que je lui donerai 
une mauvaise renommee. (Fuller said that Walker* pre- 
dicted that I would give him a bad name.") 

Proceeding on his journey the Archbishop at length reached 
a point 261 miles from salt water, known as 


Winter had now set in, and the whole Yukon land was 
merged in solemn darkness, and covered deep in a mantle 
of snow and ice. 

On the fatal morning of November 28th, the Archbishop 
slept on; he had written his last note, but Fuller was astir at 
an early hour (3 a.m.) "He could not sleep," he said. Wild 
hallucinations, intensified by the solitude and the oppressive 
stillness of the place, haunted him; every object seemed to 
him an enemy. 

Peering into the darkness the Indian gfuides saw him 
attending to the fire, but nothing happening to awaken their 
sui.picions they drew back to their blankets. All was still as 
the grave. In a little while they heard Fuller say: "Bishop, 
it is time to get up," and then came the loud report of a rilie 
— the Archbishop fell lifeless on the frozen ground — Fuller 
had deliberately shot him. 

Little more remains to be told. The murderer was secured 
by the Indians and carefully watched through the gloom of the 
winter. Close by, resting on the ice, his rude coffin covered 
with snow, lay the body of the martyred bishop. And when 
at lasi spring came round and the bonds of the great river 
broke, his body was taken to Fort Yukon and then to St. 
Michael's, where it lay until the autumn of the following year. 
A United States gunboat arriving conveyed it to Victoria 
where it now lies under the cathedral altar. Requiescaf in 

•A trader. 







Newly Furnished, FouroStory Brick Building, with Electric Bells and I,ights. 
Baths and other modem conveniences, > 

Board and Room, $1.00 per day up. 

Special Rates by week or month. 

P.O. Box 541. —^i^MEALS 2S CENTS. 

BUCK BUILDING. FIBB B8CAPB8. tAtm. White, ProprlotreMs. 

SDenoer's flrcade. 

• . .Oovernment Street. . . 

flat Opened a Departmeat ob the rirat rioor Devoted ift 



SHEETS, TENTS, SLEDS, and everything neces- 
aary tor a Yukon trip at as low prices as is 
consistent with reliable articles. 


Spsoial terms to large parties. 
Correspondenee attended to. 

M.B.— All Goods pnrehasod In the United States are snfcjeot to Duty 
averaging 30 per cent. Quod* bought in Yietoria pay no Duty. 


Campbell & Co., 


Cor. Broad aod Trounce Ave. 
0pp. The Driard. 

Victoria, B.C. 







Outfit at 

I E.J.Saun(lers&Co. 


s Having had years of experience in this 
S line we know just what is needed and 
E how to pack outfits. 


Johnson St. Victoria, and Alberni. 



ind ReUll 

Ch^TTstS and OrU^^'rzi^ 

Miners' Medicines and 
Medicine Chests a Specialty. 

31 Yates Street. - - Victoria, B.C. 



The Hickman, Tye 

Hardware Co., Ltd. 

Clondyke Outfits a Specialty. 

32-34 Yates St. - Victoria, B.C. 





Pioneer Steam Coffee and Spice Mills. 


Coffees, Spices, Cocoa, Cresm Tartar, 
Mustard and Baki:ig Powdar. — mr^ 



Bet. Government & Oouglaa. " ▼lClt>ri<l, 0.\^, 




Manufacturers of Worcester Sauce, Pickles of all kinds, Tomato 
Catsup, Concentrated Vinegars, Extract of Beei, Champagne and Bulk 
Ciders, Flavouring Extracts, Curry Powder etc 

Our goods are carried by the following Victoria Houses: Simon Leisbr 
& Co., R. P. RiTHRT & Co., Wilson Bros., Thomas Earlk, Erskink 
Wall & Co. 

Our Ck>nceiitrated Vinegars and Extract of Beef are just 
the thing for the Klondyke. 

Goods especially packed for the long haul. 

H. J. BRADY & CO. Props. 

Fastory it Office, 66-68 BiMchard St. VICTORIA, B.C. 


WeilerBros. victoria, b.c. 

Largest ccKtnplete House Furnishing Es- 
tablishment on the Pacific Coast. Hotels, 
Boarding Houc es, Steamboats and Store- 
keepers supplied at lowest possible prices. 

Correspondence Solicited. 


51 to 55 Fort St. 


Guns, Ammunition, Fishing Tackle, Cutlery, etc.— Repairing 
of all kinds done. — Beboring, Restocking, Browning, etc. — 
Fisbins Tackle and Bicycles repaired.— Skates, Knives and 
ScisBors polished and sharpened. 



Manufacturer of G<X)king Utensils, Stoves, Lamps, 

Lanterns, Candle Moulds, and all kinds of 

General Hardware and Miners' Tools. 

88^ Douglas St., 




Graduate from the University of Pennsylvania 
and Royal University of Havana. 

Rooms 34 and 26, 

Five Sisters' Bioi>l(. 

Entrance bu 
Savannah's Ptioto Galieru. 

Yukon Transli) 

..Outfitters for the.. 

Klondyke Mines. . 

We furnish through the wholesale houses every articl* 
necessary to carry on mining, and further, we will have 
heavy clothing made TO ORDER at wholesale prices, if 
measurement be sent. EVERY LINE OF TRAVEL will soon 
be crowded, and fares are going up. Write us to secure 
ticket; and at the same time send approximate cost (at 
present $35 to $50) to Bank British North America in your 
own name, and we will Lave your passage secured and out- 
fit ready if desired. By doing this great delay and expense 
will be saved and no possible risk incurred. 

Samples of Heavy Clothing, such ■• Mackinaw, Corduroy, «tc. 

Dates on which staamsrs sail for tho North. 

Cost of Outfit. 

Conditions and eomparatlv* merits of the different Posses 

up to date. 
Full weather report. 
New Mining Laws and lateat Information from the Mines, 

Fries aic. 

I ADfiC Pni (IDCn II AD of WHITB PASS. Profile Map of 
LAIlDC UULUnkU HI Ar GHII<K00T pass, showing tram road. 
Map of KLONDIKIt RIVER and tributariea, from o£Bcial Survey, loe. 
Table of Distances from which boats sale for the North, The entire 
list (eleven items), PR I C E 30 CE NTS. 



Tai Soong & Co. 


Wholesale and Retail Dealers in Tea, Rice, Opium, Nut Oil, Giilnaware. 

Chifiss* •nd Japanese Fancy Goods, Curios, Ite. 







Two doors bolow Gov't St. 

BOX 213. 






135 K Oo'vemnaent Street. 


— AND— 

■■m Manuhicturer of Miners* Clothing* 






Overalls, Tents, Waterproof Bags. 
Heavy Wool Socks, Indian Make« 

BOX 238. 

.8 Store St., VICTORIA, B.C. 



All kinds of contracts tor Chinese lalMur furnislied. 

a8 Cormorant Street, 

.VICTORIA, e.c. 

Wo Hope & Co. 

Mackinaw Suits, etc., 
Made at Short Notice. 

27 Store Street, Victona, B.C. 

HINTON'S ''-'''' 

Never Slips 

6a Government St., Victoria. 

Fits any Shoe or Boot 



Biscuit Manufacturers, VICTORIA, B.C. 

pared for Mining Camps. SMITH'S DOG BISCUITO are 
cheapest and best iia the Market. 

The Vernon, 

66 Douglas Street, 
VICTORIA, ^.C.^^^^ 




TBRMS MODBRATB. MRS. M. WALT, - rro|irl«trMS. 

^^^J. H. BAKER'S 

For the Rneet AMortment of high-grade 

Boots and Shoes 

Also the moat approved 

Klondyke Goods 


59 Government St. 

To be had in the market 
at Rock-Bottom Prices. 



The best kind of Soaps to take with yo n are 



•• sur* you talis aom* of riNDRAV*S CONCINTRATKD VINEOAR with you. 



■C. J. MULLIMS (Miner) endonea above Soapi. 



I Esquimau & Nanaimo 
I Railway Co J s Steamers 

! POR_ 





Cargo ship'-Richard III. 

■WW— ■—■—■—■■— WW 

Paaseager Steamer 

City of Nanaimo 

W. D. Owen, Master. 

WUl leave Victoria every 
alternate Thursday for 


Wr angel, JuneaUf 
Skagway ««rf Dyea I 

Commenelng on or abont 

Tliursday, Feb. 3, 6 p.m. 

Calling at Nanaimo, Vancouver and Northern 
British Columbia Ports. 


The Company rc:>erv^s the rif ht to ohange this time table at any s: 
time wtt hoiit notif leatton. For freltht and passage apply to s 


F. C. Davidge & Co. Agents. I 




i«» III I 


■ ' '•i 




The Klondike Mining^ 
Trading and Transport 
Corporation Limited. . 




% •«- 

PenoM dtea^^ tratuq^tn^tion for themselvee or merchaadiae : 
to all Yukon j^Dtnta shotild {tOTfeapond with 
Hie Victoria Office. 

•^>> v*> 


Sir ChariM tu|iiier; Barl. 


Itoii. E^gar Dewdfiey, J. T, Mhuno, 

Vv or M. Luflrin, C. ni^wartli. 

■' , ■ •" ■ . ■■ ■ t- .■ ■* 



.^„ .t.- ifeKW,i 

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